Some users grumble about Twitter's photo previews

Some Twitter users are complaining about a change that puts photo previews front and center in their streams, and offering advice to others on how to turn it off.

Apparently some users like viewing photos on Twitter but don’t want image previews appearing automatically in their stream, which is what happens with a change to the service rolled out Tuesday.

“I was perfectly happy with that one extra step of ‘show picture’ for the ability to see a picture that I want to see,” one user wrote on Twitter’s developer forum.

“I do not necessarily want to see every picture that every person I follow posts, right on my timeline,” the person wrote.

Another Twitter user wondered if he had “ticked something somewhere” without realizing it.

“Wow, Twitter is suddenly unscannable. What is this crap in the feed and how do I turn if off?” asked another.

The update means users no longer have to click a link to view the photos, so scrolling through Twitter can now mean scrolling past a lot of photos. It’s been activated on the desktop version of Twitter and is included with an update for the iOS and Android apps. It only works with images posted on Twitter itself, or videos posted on Twitter’s Vine service, however.

Twitter is apparently keen for users to see a lot more images in their Twitter streams. Photography is a key service for social networks, and Google updated its photo features on Google+ Tuesday as well.

Showing photos in Twitter without needing to click on them can have unintended consequences, though. A search for “twitter photo previews” on Twitter Tuesday revealed at least one explicit pornographic image.

Some users provided advice on how to disable the feature, posting screenshots of how to turn it off within the Twitter app on mobile devices. The image previews can’t be disabled on the desktop, however. (Here’s TechHive’s advice on turning off online images in the mobile version of Twitter.)

It’s not uncommon for users to complain about changes to online services, as Facebook, Yahoo and others know too well.

One user suggested this is a fight Twitter can’t win. “Y’all complained when Twitter wasn’t visual. Today, y’all are complaining it has photos in your stream?”

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