Twitter Spaces will now reside where Fleets used to
In July, Twitter announced that it is retiring Fleets - disappearing tweets that resembled Instagram Stories. Now, the microblogging platform has announced that it will give that screen real estate (at the top of the user's timeline) to its Clubhouse competitor called Twitter Spaces. The company claims that it will help Android and iOS users discover more Spaces. Here are more details.
Twitter's Spaces account outlines the changes for enhanced discoverability
we’re experimenting with ways to help you discover more Spaces. for some of you on iOS and android, if someone you follow is listening to a Space, you’ll see it at the top of your tl.— Spaces (@TwitterSpaces) August 24, 2021
you can control who can see your listening activity in your settings.
send us your thoughts! pic.twitter.com/8fbEZUMvM7
You won't just see Spaces hosted by people you follow
According to Twitter Spaces, the platform is experimenting with a way to discover more Spaces. The region at the top of a user's timeline that used to be taken up by Fleets will now feature active Spaces that someone you follow is listening to. This is a step up from the current arrangement that only shows Spaces being hosted by people you follow.
New Settings toggle gives users more control over their privacy
Twitter has provisioned for privacy-centric users to hide which Spaces they are listening to. On Twitter's app, navigate to Settings and privacy > Privacy and Safety > Spaces and switch off the "Let followers see which Spaces you're listening to" toggle. Now, your followers won't be recommended the Spaces you're listening to but if they join it, they'll be able to see you're listening.
Twitter could make these changes permanent amid growing competition
If Twitter's experiment leads to a quantifiable uptick in engagement on Spaces, we speculate that the microblogging platform might choose to make the change a permanent one and make it available across its platforms globally. After all, Spaces needs to keep users hooked amid growing competition from the now-easier-to-access Clubhouse app and Facebook's version of audio-based social networking called Live Audio Rooms.
Fleets was retired due to lack of sufficient user participation
Meanwhile, Twitter chose to shut Fleets down since by its own admission, there weren't enough people using the feature to keep it around. Fleets allowed users to post tweets that automatically disappeared after 24 hours. It was Twitter's version of the Stories concept pioneered by Snapchat and later cannibalized by almost all Big Tech social media platforms including Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram.