Twitter Native Polls Or Twitter Surveys will weaken the Tweets

Will you create polls on your tweets, if Twitter allows you to?

I'm asking this question as Twitter is working to allow Twitter users add quick polls to their tweets.

The Twitter Surveys or Twitter polls are presently being tested on Twitter mobile app and website only. That's the Twitter desktop applications like TweetDeck are not showing them at present.

For who the Twitter Poll feature is for?

With 316 million monthly active users, it's difficult to understand how Twitter wants to benefit from the Twitter Polls. That too when every Twitter user will have the ability create a poll in his/her tweet.

I'm saying this, as a 140 character tweet along with a hashtag in itself is a survey. With one missing feature though: A hashtag can show whether it's trending or not; but it doesn't tell what people opine when they used the trending hashtag. I think, Twitter rolled out Twitter native polls, just to rectify this deficiency. But has it taken the right way, is still questionable.

I think, rolling Twitter polls will weaken the Tweets and trending topics. As people will take the shorter route to make an opinion. And the shorter route will be the survey results.

Allow me to assume that Twitter is testing native polls feature just to get lump sum money from biggest of customers -- the Governments and Brands, who rely on polls to create a definite perception.

As far as Governments are concerned, then it can be assumed that they will use the Twitter Polls feature to create a pro-Government opinion; and that makes sense, as on political issues people don't take a second to register their slant; and an online poll suits this behavior as well. In addition, Governments live from one election to the other; hence even if an opinion can't be prolonged for years; a political party will not be much concerned.

But can brands benefit from the polls the same way? I think no. As unlike Governments they will be affected by the commercial logic. That's even after paying big money to Twitter to get the brand surge; they will not be able to get the results. That apart, they have to think about controlling perception both in short and long run.

On the hindsight, the ability of Twitter to create opinions or topple Governments, comes from the fact that Twitter users believe that their free will cannot be over-ridden by other means. The moment they start feeling that Governments, power groups and brands are directly paying Twitter to create an opinion; then they will lose the faith.

That's why I don't think, rolling out polls on an online platform, which is already an opinion maker, is a very good step. It will weaken the very foundation -- the Tweets.

If Twitter is rolling out polls to make its platform Government-friendly or brands-friendly, then it should think twice; as it doesn't gel well with what Twitter is known for -- create opinions.

But unfortunately Twitter plans to do exactly that. As according to some reports, the accessibility to embed these polls will remain with Twitter employees and certain verified profiles including those in media and sports. This means, Twitter doesn't want various websites or blogs (sometimes more honest voices online) to share a Twitter poll there.  Another thing which points to Twitter's intent to create opinions in black and white through Polls, is the very structure of the Poll. The Twitter polls which many Twitter users are creating right now are displaying a simple poll structure, where you're presented with two options to choose from. Such polls particularly suit Governments as they create a clear boundary even on those topics where people hold an array of opinions.

What else is Twitter Testing these days?

Twitter us working on redesigning its “Follow” and “Tweet” buttons, which will be rolled next month. The follow button will remove the count. A Good move. As this will increase the value of the Tweet. Right now, the follower count of a particular Twitter user, also pushes the people to decide whether to re-tweet or not.

But, Don't you think Twitter Native Polls and Follow button will no follower count, contradict each other?


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