Elon Musk, the owner of X (formerly Twitter), has announced another change to headline displays on the popular social media platform. Well, less a change and more a reversion. The network will reintroduce headlines in preview cards but in a slightly different format.
Musk’s decision is a U-turn from last month when article titles were removed to”improved esthetics“.
How do headlines on Twitter/X display?
Unless the user writes the headline into the caption of the tweet/post they don’t appear when a link is posted. Alternatively, users can click or tap on the URL card to access the full article.
In response, publishers of all sizes adapted by crafting their own headlines on images, posting the link separately, or including the headline in the generated preview card image.
In an upcoming release, 𝕏 will overlay title in the upper potion of the image of a URL card
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 23, 2023
In a post on X, the tech mogul announced the update will overlay the title in the upper portion of the image within a URL Card. However, Musk did not provide a specific timeline for the rollout or offer an example of how it may appear. Nor did he state why the change was taking place.
Legal and advertising challenges
Elon Musk is facing a challenging period with major advertisers. Apple, Disney and other blue chip companies paused spending due to allegations of the billionaire’s endorsement of antisemitic remarks. Accusations he vehemently denies.
On Monday, Musk took legal action against Media Matters over defamation claims. The move came after the left-leaning news watchdog published an article claiming ads from prominent brands like IBM and Apple were appearing next to hateful content.
The lawsuit from X accuses Media Matters of distorting the likelihood of ads appearing next to extremist content on X. It alleges the group’s testing methodology doesn’t represent how real users experience the site.
Featured image: Elon Musk from Flickr under Creative Commons 2.0 license.