Twitter is looking to settle the hearts vs. stars debate once and for all.
In a talk at the Open Mobile Summit in San Francisco this morning, Twitter Product SVP Kevin Weil shared data on the heart's performance vs. the star — aka: the favorite — that drove Twitter's decision to make the switch.
"It’s a change that’s been fantastic for the platform," said Weil. "We see now 6% more hearts, 6% more likes on Twitter than we saw with favorites." He also noted that new users tend to engage 9% more with this change.
Weil's remarks marked the first time Twitter shared data related to the switchover, which occurred last week to mixed reviews. After years of the star functioning as a de facto bookmarking tool, and a button you used to signal you were done with a conversation, Twitter switched over to hearts last week saying it wanted to "make Twitter easier and more rewarding to use."
The data, released only a week into the change, should be approached with a dose of caution since the heart's novelty factor may be responsible for skewing the numbers. Still, the numbers at least initially back up the decision to make the move.
When Twitter introduced the heart last week, it was met with a firestorm of criticism from power users who felt the company was overlooking their needs in order to meet Wall Street demands. For those hoping for a reversal, this early data suggests the heart is here to stay.
Alex Kantrowitz is a senior technology reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in San Francisco. He reports on social and communications.
Contact Alex Kantrowitz at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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