Should I Join Threads?
In late October 2022 Elon Musk finalised the Twitter takeover and appointed himself CEO. This move hasn’t been without controversy. There have been many changes, most notably the name change to X and the introduction of paid subscription services. Many organisations left X (Twitter) in search of an alternative social media platform. You can read about three alternatives here. However, the newest app on the block is Threads. Let’s take a look at whether it is worth joining Threads.
What is Threads?
In July 2023, Meta (Facebook and Instagram’s parent company) launched Threads. It was built by the Instagram team and is used for sharing text updates and joining public conversations. Meta have made it easy to sign up to, and you can use your Instagram account to log in and create posts of up to 500 characters long with links, photos and videos of up to 5 minutes long. You can read more updates about Threads here.
What are the main differences between X (Twitter) and Threads
If you are thinking of joining Threads then it is important to understand how it differs to X (Twitter). Here is a comparison list:
Availability – You can access X (Twitter) from practically anywhere (web, phone, etc) as it has adapted to public demands since its launch in 2006. As Threads is fairly new, up until recently it was only available via an app on a smartphone or tablet and not in every EU country. Pocket Lint has a guide on how to use Threads on your desktop.
Character Limits – X (Twitter) post character length is 280 (although Twitter Blue is 10,000). Threads currently allows 500 characters.
Drafts – You can save a draft post in X (Twitter). This isn’t currently available in Threads but it is inevitably something they are working on. In the meantime, if you might be able a social media scheduler then you can save drafts in there.
Direct Messaging – You can send messages privately in X (Twitter). This isn’t currently available in Threads but Hollyland has quite a good work around.
Hashtags – This has been a key component of X (Twitter) and Instagram. Threads has done away with hashtags but instead uses tags. The notable difference is that you can only use one tag per post on Threads vs 30 on Instagram. You can read more in this Evening Standard article.
Accounts – X (Twitter) is a stand-alone account. Threads and Instagram are closely tied and you can’t currently have a Threads account without an Instagram account. Threads relies on a lot of Instagram’s features including its messaging inbox.
Usernames – You can change your name on X (Twitter) as many times as you like and you won’t need to verify your identity. As Threads and Instagram are linked, they share the same username. You can then only change your name twice within a 14-day period.
Search Function – X (Twitter) has a more advanced search function than Threads. However, as things evolve Threads search functions will have more features. In September 2023, The Verge reported that Threads allowed to search through posts more widely.
Trending Topics – One of the main differences currently is that X (Twitter) has a trending topics section where you can click on various hashtags and see what the hottest gossip is. Threads will be rolling out their own version of this shortly, according to 9to5Mac.
Should I Join Threads?
Now that you’ve read how Threads compares to rival X (Twitter), do you think you will be joining?
Lifehacker gives lots of reasons NOT to join Threads. However, if you have an Instagram account then there’s no harm signing up. As you’ve seen, the platform is evolving and adding new functionalities all the time. Early adopters of Instagram and TikTok have gained an edge over other brands who joined those platforms later on. Therefore, it might be just the thing to give your brand on social media.
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