Twitter CEO reveals plans for interactive tweets and content curration

Tweets are set to get a whole lot more useful as CEO Dick Costolo reveals plans for new tools that will allow users to pull out selected tweets and publish them adding to the existing ability to embed single tweets.

The new feature is likely to prove useful when it comes to journalists and others covering real-time events and takes Twitter further down the road of curation.

Other features on the way include tweet boxes. These will allow the inclusion of features such as live polls that will show real-time results directly within a tweet box.

The introduction of interactive polls adds another layer of content to Twitter and  follows the launch of expanded tweets earlier this year.

Also on the way is the ability for users to be able to download the full archive of their tweets by the end of the year.  That is something people have been asking for a long time and is going to be a welcome addition.

Some of the changes coming are, according to CEO Dick Costolo, about creating the ability to curate shared events on Twitter:

“We’ve known for a long time that for events in the real world, the shared experience is on Twitter. We want to create an ability to curate those events.

“We want to migrate to a world in which the 140 characters can serve as a caption for additional functionality. We’d like that to include things like real-time data, even an application functionality,” Costolo said.

He stressed the move was part of Twitter’s commitment to remain a neutral and interactive platform, which some have called into question following recent third party rule changes that restrict access to tweets.

Twitter put in place new rules that only allow access to tweets through its website or a officially endorsed app (like Storify for instance). That saw it cut ties with LinkedIn.

The removal of Twitter from LinkedIn gave Facebook a nice lift with pages picking up a 1000% spike. 

The decision to tighten control over tweets came after the company realized it had invested significant resources in its service, but other companies were making money off of it without adding “accretive value,” Costolo said. 

“We were spending all this money” eliminate fake accounts and improve the Twitter experience, Costolo said, but users still had a “choice” of “experiences.” Fake accounts may be created by spammers or impersonatorsReuters reports.

The new curation tool will allow users to select a range of tweets and pull them into news pages and blog posts.

It follows Twitter’s recent introduction of a new timeline tool to make it easy for any site to display a timeline of Tweets on their website.

Costolo, who was speaking at the Online News Association conference in San Francisco, again dismissed speculation that Twitter was acting more and more like a media company.

Debate about whether Twitter is or is not a media company has intensified these past few months as Twitter teamed up with US broadcaster NBC Universal to cover the Olympics.

The Olympic tie-up with NBC followed another recent content play with Nascar where Twitter took ownership of the hashtag and built a page around the content.

However, Costolo stressed that it was “not about being a destination”.

“I’m a huge believer in syndication. Platform companies always outflank and outlast point solutions and individual products,” Costolo said.