Twitter is starting to test a new feature that will give users the ability to control just who can reply to their tweets.
Before you Tweet, you’ll be able to choose who can reply with three options: everyone (standard Twitter, and the default setting), only people you follow, or only people you mention. Tweets with the latter two settings will be labeled and the reply icon will be grayed out so that it’s clear to users who can’t reply.
Users who don’t have permission to reply will still be able to view, Retweet, Retweet with Comment, and like these Tweets.
The idea is to give users more control over the conversations they start, and to minimise the nuisance replies and auto-replies that many tweets can receive.
Suzanne Xie, Director of Product Management at Twitter said:
Being able to participate and understand what’s happening is key for useful public conversation. So, we’re exploring how we can improve these settings to give people more opportunities to weigh in while still giving people control over the conversations they start.
In addition to this, we’re making it easier to read all conversations around a Tweet with a new layout for replies and more accessible Retweets with comments.
For now, only a limited group of people globally on Twitter for iOS, Android, and twitter.com can Tweet with these settings.