December 14, 2012

Twitter Beautification

Look, nobody likes someone who isn’t willing to commit, especially when committing is as easy as slapping up some dumb photo you took of yourself in the bathroom.

That tell-tale egg is a sure sign of a Twitter Rookie, someone who either hasn’t yet had the time to update their profile or simply doesn’t care to do so.

“Maybe it lends me an air of mystery,” this eggy person likely thinks to him or herself.

“I’m like an enigmatic egg atop this blue backdrop of ennui.”

In September, the fine folks at Twitter began rolling out a redesigned homepage and application, bringing with it an easier way to Hatch Your Egg, so to speak, and also dress up your profile and make it look a little more like Facebook.

Of course, Twitter couldn’t exactly call their Facebook-ish background photo the “Cover Photo;” Something about “brand identification” and other such pretensions. No, Twitter calls this background photo the “header” photo, and users can make this header photo whatever they like, (with the obvious restrictions which shouldn’t HAVE to be noted)

These two images are meant to make a user’s Twitter profile more customized and personable, a better reflection of the user.

Today, the micro-blogging service announced that every Twitter user, even the little eggish ones, will be receiving this layout come December 12th.

Twitter wants you to get excited about these changes, too:

“On December 12, we’re rolling this out to all users: you’ll automatically get this new version of the profile on twitter.com. If you don’t upload a header photo by then, you (and everyone else) will only see a default grey image on your page. That’s not fun! To get inspired about what you can do, check out this video to see how to make your profile a little more “you,” less generic. Have fun out there.”

In fact, Twitter wants you to be so excited about these changes, they created a video explaining how to make these changes to an account.

Sesame Street must’ve rejected this video for some reason (I can’t see why….) so now they’re showing it at YouTube for all those Twitter users who can’t figure out how a basic settings panel works.

When looked at on the whole, this is a good move on Twitter’s part.

After all, they are wanting to make themselves a Media Company and use their users as continuously captivated customers, capable only of expressing their thoughts in short, horn-stab-like bursts.

Yet, now that users have been given this freedom, I can’t help but wonder how long it takes for some users to make a complete mess of their profiles. Users have long been able to choose their own Background image, (not the Header, the image behind the entire screen) but with the new freedom of being able to choose a Header image as well, I can’t help but think the days of MySpace are on their way to haunt us once more.

Twitter clearly suspected this, banning all GIFs as profile pictures this September, so there goes the option to make a profile picture a pink exploding bunny with glitter for innards. Yet, there are plenty of other ways to make these profiles look horrific. The background can be something downloaded for free with a code found on the bottom of a soda lid. The Header can be a horribly out-of-focus picture of 6 or more girls at the beach whose face will invariably be blocked by the square profile picture of a cookie.

Yes, people have a knack for making terrible, ugly things, and now, Twitter profiles are just one more thing for us all to screw up.

Happy Holidays, Earth!

Image Credit: Photos.com

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