Circle has become the latest X feature to shut down since Elon Musk took over ownership of Twitter.
This does not come as a surprise, as X owner Musk has been talking about retiring the feature for months. Naturally, we all knew it was only a matter of time, and now that October 31 has been officially confirmed, our predictions have come true.
X, in a statement, said:
“X is deprecating Circles as of Oct 31st, 2023. After this date, you will not be able to create new posts that are limited to your Circle, nor will you be able to add people to your Circle. You will, however, be able to remove people from your Circle, by unfollowing them, as described below.”
Musk had this to say about Circle back in July:
“Part of the problem with Circles, as I see it at least, is that most users likely conduct the discussions that would fit into this offering within their DMs already, maintaining group chats with their close friends in a more private space. That privacy enables people to feel more comfortable sharing, and there doesn’t seem like much reason for them to switch those conversations to the potentially more exposed Circles option instead.”
For users who would want to keep their Circle contacts, X said they would have to unfollow, then refollow those profiles, which effectively removes them from their Circle, then add them as a regular contact.
Fleets was terminated by X, then Twitter, two years ago. The business claimed in a blog post that user disinterest was the reason for retiring the Story clone.
Even though Fleets may not have lived up to Twitter’s expectations, the social media behemoth actually had its sights set on a few other initiatives. Perhaps Twitter was less concerned with Fleets’ “distraction” and was more intent on making its Spaces feature a huge hit.
Fleets was barely eight months old, and that is hardly enough time for it to make a good impression. Twitter might have benefited from giving Fleet a little more time to develop, but that was then and this is now.
Ephemeral stories are giving other social media platforms like Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, and WhatsApp all the attention they needed; it just did not work with Twitter.