Jetpack 9.0 to Introduce New Feature for Publishing WordPress Posts to Twitter as Threads

Jetpack 9.0, coming on October 6, will debut a new feature that allows users to share blog posts as Twitter threads in multiples tweets. A recent version of Jetpack introduced the ability to import and unroll tweetstorms for publishing inside a post. The 9.0 release will run it back the other way so the content originates in WordPress, yet still reaps all the same benefits of circulation on Twitter as a thread.

The new Twitter threads feature is being added as part of Jetpack’s Publicize module under the Twitter settings. After linking up a Twitter account, the Jetpack sidebar options for Publicize allow users to publish to Twitter as a link to the blog or a set of threaded tweets. It’s not just limited to text content – the threads feature will also upload and attach any images and videos included in the post.

When first introduced to the idea of publishing a Twitter thread from WordPress, I wondered if threads might lose their trademark pithy punch, since users aren’t forced to keep each segment to the standard length of a tweet. Would each tweet be separated in an odd, unreadable way? The Jetpack team anticipated this, so the thread option adds more information to the block editor to show where the paragraphs will be split into multiple tweets.

“Threads are wildly underused on Twitter,” Gary Pendergast said in a post introducing the feature. “I think a big part of that is the UI for writing threads: while it’s suited to writing a thread as a series of related tweet-sized chunks, it doesn’t lend itself to writing, revising, and editing anything more complex.” The tool Pendergast has been working on for Jetpack gives users the best of both worlds.

In response to a comment requesting Automattic “concentrate on tools to get people off social media,” Pendergast said, “If we’re also able to improve the quality of conversations on social media, I think it’d be remiss of us to not do so.” He also credits IndieWeb discussions on Tweetstorms and POSSE (Publish (on your) Own Site, Syndicate Elsewhere) as inspirations for the feature.

For years, blogging advocates have tried to convince those who post lengthy tweetstorms to switch to a publishing medium that is more suitable to the length of their thoughts. The problem is that Twitter users lose so much of the immediate feedback and momentum that their thoughts would have generated when composed as a tweetstorm.

Instead of lecturing people about how they should really be blogging instead of tweetstorming, Jetpack is taking a fresh approach by enabling full content ownership with effortless social syndication. You can test out the experience for yourself by adding the Jetpack Beta Testers plugin and running the 9.0 RC version on your site.

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10 responses to “Jetpack 9.0 to Introduce New Feature for Publishing WordPress Posts to Twitter as Threads”

  1. Pooja says:

    Great to see this Sarah.

    Can you also address the concern of many bloggers that Jetpack slows down the blog or page? I think this will clear many doubts of the readers.

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    • Jeremy says:

      Can you also address the concern of many bloggers that Jetpack slows down the blog or page? I think this will clear many doubts of the readers.

      Hi! I work on the Jetpack team, and I’d like to offer some information that will hopefully address your concerns.

      Jetpack is a big plugin. It offers a lot of features, and as a result I think it’s only natural for folks to worry about the impact such a plugin could have on their site. It’s definitely a great question to ask yourself when installing a new theme or plugin on your site. 👍

      The good news is, that’s something we in the Jetpack team take very seriously as well. In the past few years, we’ve continuously worked on improving the performance of every aspect of the plugin:

      We update existing features to improve their performance.
      We consider potential performance impacts whenever we develop and introduce new features.
      Some of the features we add to the plugin are directly meant to improve performance on your site. Our image, file, and video CDNs are there to help, alongside features like Lazy Loading for your images for example.

      In addition to the work we do within the plugin, we also rely on the WordPress.com cloud to improve your site’s performance. When you install Jetpack, you connect your site to WordPress.com. Once you’ve done that, some of the Jetpack features you’ll use will rely on the WordPress.com infrastructure. Instead of using your hosting plan’s resources, the plugin will rely on WordPress.com to do some of the heavy lifting on your site. Things like backups will be stored safely on our servers; Related Posts will be indexed and processed on our servers instead of on yours. You can then choose to rely on those features instead of using a plugin that would do the work on your own site. This will have a positive impact on your site’s performance.

      All that said, some of the work will also fall on you. You will decide what Jetpack features you want to enable on your site, and you’ll have to decide whether those features are worth the impact they may have on your site.
      Let’s look at some examples. Jetpack allows you to add several official sharing buttons at the bottom of all your posts, as well as widgets to display your latest Tweets, Instagram pictures, or posts on your Facebook Page. It also allows you to embed Instagram pictures or timelines within your posts, as discussed in the post above.
      Each one of those things can be useful, but can also have an impact on your site’s loading speed.
      It’s then up to you to decide whether you need all those sharing buttons, widgets, and embeds. You can give things a try, and adjust things as necessary.

      I hope this clarified things a bit. If you ever have any questions or concerns about Jetpack, don’t hesitate to reach out! We’re always happy to answer any questions you may have about the service.

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  2. Gary says:

    Awww, you didn’t publish this post to Twitter as a thread! 😄

    I’m glad to see you found the Twitter-related UI we added to the block editor useful: there was very much a focus on providing immediate feedback (so you can make quick edits specifically for Twitter), but to keep it as subtle as possible, so it didn’t get in the way of your writing. I really wanted to avoid a situation where tweets would be generated weirdly, it had to create something that read like a Twitter thread. Comparing the post I wrote to the thread it created, you can see some of that in action: long paragraphs are split up at sentence breaks, consecutive short paragraphs are merged into a single tweet where possible, headings cause a new tweet to start, and it generally tries to apply Twitter conventions to how everything is formatted.

    There’s a lot more that could be done with this feature, but I think it’s ready for folks to start using, and we can iterate on it based on wider feedback. I do have one request for now, though: if there are plugin devs who’ve made blocks that they think would translate well to the Twitter format, I’d love to see some examples, as adding plugin support is high on my TODO list. 🙂

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  3. Awesome article! On a related tangent, the video hosting in Jetpack is excellent, yet rarely gets discussed. We’re using Jetpack Premium, which comes with Pressable’s hosting plan. I can’t rave about Pressable enough! WordPress-4-Life! :)

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  4. Nur Islam says:

    Jetpack already have some great feature and it is adding more features regularly.
    Don’t know why people have too much negative idea on Jetpack.

    Like I use this on my blog from the beginning and I am enjoying this.
    Waiting for this new feature…

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  5. visitor says:

    Hi there! This is an insteresting feature!!

    However I still can’t find if possible to change the place where the tweet breaks and where could I modify o translate the “This thread can be read here” text of the last tweet..

    Other than that, excellent tool!

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    • Jeremy says:

      I still can’t find if possible to change the place where the tweet breaks

      You can use blocks for that. If you want a paragraph of text to be separated into multiple tweets, split that paragraph into two by adding a heading block between 2 pieces of text, for example.

      where could I modify o translate the “This thread can be read here” text of the last tweet..

      You can offer translations for this string (and others) here:https://translate.wordpress.com/projects/wpcom/

      Once your suggestion is approved, it will be immediately available to anyone using WordPress and Jetpack in your language.

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