plans to more aggressively suggest real-time events such as natural disasters and sporting events for people to follow, its latest stab at helping users sort through the vast amounts of information on the social network.
The company is creating destinations for news events that will include curated tweets and videos. It will steer people to the pages based on what they tweet about and who they follow, jostling for their attention by tapping them on the virtual shoulder to point out news.
News-event pages will appear as suggestions in modules at the top of the newsfeed, in search results and in push notifications. A combination of human editors and algorithms will curate the pages.
Most of the new features will be available in the coming months to people using Twitter on mobile devices in the U.S. The company announced the new initiatives Wednesday.
Twitter’s tighter embrace of news comes as
is softening its pursuit of becoming the town crier. It has been playing up a return to its role as a hub for families and friends following its data-sharing scandal involving Cambridge Analytica.
Twitter, on the other hand, has long been a place people go to when they want to talk about news. But the company has struggled to harness that chatter and create destinations for people searching for information.
It has also wrestled with keeping existing users engaged on a regular basis while getting people who encounter tweets outside of Twitter to sign up. Over the past three years, the number of users who visit Twitter each month has inched up to 336 million. Twitter previously has said more than two million people a day come to the service after being away 30 days or longer, and a third of them haven’t ever been on Twitter before.
The changes expand on recent Twitter initiatives including a curated-tweet feature called Moments, dedicated pages for sports events, promotions at the top of timelines called Happening Now and breaking-news notifications.
Big events such as the volcano on Hawaii’s Big Island or the National Basketball Association finals drive traffic spikes, but it remains hard for users to find the best people to follow, said Keith Coleman, vice president of product at Twitter.
“If you really want to get the best of Warriors Twitter, you want to follow the players, you want to follow the commentators, you want to follow Draymond Green’s mom,” he said. “But it’s a lot of work to do that.”
Twitter has been working on the changes for about six months, Mr. Coleman said. Chief Executive
previewed some of the changes in April, telling analysts the company was putting more resources into making it easier for users to follow topics, interests and events.