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Twitter explores ways to limit who can see your tweets

Ideas include tweeting to "trusted friends" and using different personas.

Twitter is trying to gather feedback on features it's considering. 
Graphic by Pixabay; illustration by CNET

Twitter said Thursday that it's exploring new ways for users to control who can see their tweets, including a way for people to limit their audience to "trusted friends" and see tweets from that group first. 

Andrew Courter, a product designer at Twitter, gave an early look at some of the ideas the company is considering. Courter, who tweeted from the handle @a_dsgnr, said he's looking for feedback about the ideas. Twitter hasn't yet built any of the products he mentioned in his tweets. 

The approach is in line with how Twitter has developed products in the past, which has included gathering comments from its users early in the design process. Getting early feedback could help combat any problems or criticism the company could face if it chooses to roll out a new feature.

Another idea Twitter is considering includes allowing people to tweet from different personas through one account. Users could follow all the personas or individual ones. For example, there'd be a Twitter persona for your thoughts as a parent or worker. 

Courter tweeted that the company is also exploring a feature that's "like spell-check, but for not accidentally sounding like a jerk in the replies." A user in the process of replying to a tweet would see a warning if the reply contained language, such as profanity, that the tweet's author doesn't want to see in replies. People would be able to let others know what words they prefer not to see and why, but users responding to tweets could also ignore the guidance. 

Twitter is thinking about tweaking tools it's already rolled out. The company said it's testing a new design for a label that lets users know why a tweet may be misleading. Twitter is including some users on desktop for the test but didn't say how many. The new labels include more orange and red so they stand out more to the user. It's unclear how effective these labels are in combating misinformation and the company has also incorrectly applied labels in the past to coronavirus misinformation