How could Twitter Blue’s potential ‘undo’ feature affect journalism in the timeline age?

By MixDex Article may include affiliate links

Digital Trends is reporting details about Twitter’s potential premium “Blue” service — and it could have both positive and negative benefits for journalists that use the platform to get the pulse of events.

Reportedly to be officially named “Twitter Blue” after the company’s trademark bird logo and “verified” checkmarks, the service will likely cost $3 a month.

Some potential features could include no advertising, the ability to save tweets of interest into a collection for later review and, perhaps most interesting, an “undo” option.

According to Digital Trends sources, Twitter Blue users may gain the ability to cancel posting a tweet for 5 to 30 seconds after hitting the “tweet” button (the timer reportedly may be a setting users can adjust on per account basis).

The collections feature could become useful for journalists looking to organize tweets on a specific topic for embedding into a story, for example, or creating a list of users to reach out to for further comment.

The “undo” feature may also prove handy for journalists who hit “tweet” only to notice a typo or inaccuracy in the tweet — since most tweets, in the interest of being realtime, don’t go through the traditional editing and proofreading process.

However, by extension, the feature could significantly reduce the amount of “off the cuff” and controversial tweets that make it live on the platform from politicians, celebs and other public figures since the new feature could give them a chance to think better of what they just sent.

It does not appear that Twitter has any plans to introduce an “edit” feature — something users have long requested — so it doesn’t appear controversial tweets could later be edited to fit a certain narrative of excuses for an embarrassing or offensive tweet, for example.

Facebook currently offers limited abilities to edit posts once they are live but flags them has being “edited” and shows a public history of changes made to the content.

Tweets will presumably still also be able to be deleted after posting — whether it be minutes, hours, days or years later — though there are a variety of public and private tools that permanently archive all tweets send by key accounts.