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Twitter tests letting users follow topics in the same way they follow accounts

The Verge logo The Verge 8/14/2019 Casey Newton
a drawing of a cartoon character © Photo by Michele Doying / The Verge

Twitter will begin letting users follow interests, the company said today, letting users see tweets about topics of their choosing inside the timeline. When the feature goes live, you’ll be able to follow topics including sports teams, celebrities, and television shows, with a selection of tweets about them inserted alongside tweets in your home feed.

The move represents Twitter’s latest effort to help users find the best content on the platform even if they don’t know which accounts to follow. For years, the company has sought to make it easier for people to find value in Twitter, which can be foreboding for newcomers. Previously, Twitter Moments allowed people to follow events such as the Oscars or a sports game.

Topics will be curated by Twitter. For now, they are only available for sports, said Rob Bishop, a Twitter product manager. The feature is now being tested on Android.

You can also set up separate timelines in which they can explore individual interests. In a demonstration, a product manager added keywords and some individual accounts to create a new timeline adjacent to the home feed and accessible via swiping. “We think that altogether this will make Twitter a more powerful interest platform,” said Wally Gurzynski, a product manager at the company.

You’ll also be able to mute topics, so if you’re following a TV show but haven’t seen the most recent episode, you can temporarily hide tweets about it from your feed. 

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