Just about every social media platform out there has the option to post messages, videos, pictures and so on and then automatically have them disappear after 24 hours. On the likes of Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram and others the feature is known as Stories, and now Twitter has its own version.
While the idea is self-destructing post is nothing new, Twitter has at least gone to the effort of coming up with a unique name. Fleets is the name the company has given to its brand of disappearing posts. After rolling out in just a few countries, the feature is now making its way to everyone around the world.
Twitter says that Fleets are a “lower pressure way for people to talk about what’s happening”. They differ from regular tweets in not only the fact that they automatically disappear after 24 hours, but also in that it is not possible for other people to response to Fleets, or retweet them. The only way to react to a Fleet is via DM, assuming direct messages have been left open.
In a tweet, Twitter gives an insight into how the feature works, what it looks like, and what you might want to use it for:
That thing you didn’t Tweet but wanted to but didn’t but got so close but then were like nah. We have a place for that now—Fleets! Rolling out to everyone starting today. pic.twitter.com/auQAHXZMfHNovember 17, 2020
Fleets are limited to the iOS and Android apps, and can be created in various ways. You can share an existing tweet, or you can opt to write something from scratch. You can also use images or videos in your Fleets, adding text and emoji if you want. Once posted, you can monitor how many people have seen your post, as well as a breakdown of exactly who this was.
The global rollout is now underway, and while there is nothing you can do to speed up the arrival of Fleets in your account, it’s good to know what to look out for. Twitter says that you’ll know that you have access to Fleets when you can see your profile image in the new bar across the top of your app’s Home timeline.