Twitter Brings More Media Content Into Tweets

Twitter announced partnerships with several media outlets on Wednesday that will allow users to see a preview of the website being linked to in their Twitter feed.

"When you expand Tweets containing links to partner websites, you can now see content previews, view images, play videos and more," Twitter said in a blog post.

Its partners so far include The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, blogs including BuzzFeed and TMZ, and video content providers including Lifetime and some BET programs.

Twitter allowed users to view images in expanded tweets through an update rolled out in December. Wednesday's announcement expands that functionality.

A tweet containing a URL for a newspaper article, for example, can be expanded to display the headline, an introduction and potentially the Twitter accounts of the publisher and writer. Users can also expand tweets containing links to partner companies to view photographs and videos within their Twitter feeds.

The feature will likely keep people on Twitter's website for longer, said Brian Blau, an analyst at Gartner.

"We already know that tweets that have links in them are more valuable for users, so if you're looking to expand even further the value of those tweets, you can give people the decision to click off the site, or [not to] if they have enough information from the tweet," Blau said.

According to its blog post, Twitter expects the media partnership program to grow.

Cameron Scott covers search, web services and privacy for The IDG News Service. Follow Cameron on Twitter at CScott_IDG.

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