Twitter appears to be testing a new feature that will allow users to cancel sending a tweet. The feature will give you a few seconds to go back after you hit send, which could prevent cases like unfortunate typos, misinformation, or just controversial takes.
The unconfirmed feature was spotted by tipster Jane Manchun Wong, who tweeted a GIF showing how it will potentially work. As the tweet below shows, the user has approximately five seconds to choose to cancel the sent tweet, preventing it from going out before it is posted.
Twitter is working on the “Cancel Send” timer for tweets pic.twitter.com/nS0kuijPK0March 5, 2021
However, there is a glaring problem with the Cancel Tweet feature – you cannot see your tweet when prompted to cancel. As such, you may not even spot your mistakes until the pop-up clears and you see the tweet posted.
When you think about it, Twitter’s apparent test function Cancel Tweet is really just a step away from giving us outright an editing option, which users have wanted for years. This begs the question, so why would Twitter instead test a feature where we can’t even see the errors that we would like to undo?
Twitter users have long been clamoring for an Edit button, especially given the platform’s short and quick approach to the post. Being able to undo tweets is a step in the right direction, but as mentioned, the functionality currently being tested is far from perfect.
If Twitter could at least make a preview of your tweet visible with the cancel option, along with a slightly longer delay, that would certainly help make this feature really usable for a wider audience.
Keep in mind that this undo feature does not protect you from tweets that you have already posted. It’s more of a “are you sure about that?” kind of feature in case you just want to recheck after you initially hit send. If you’ve already posted the tweet, the old delete option would still be your choice.
Until then, if this feature is indeed rolled out across Twitter’s user base as a whole, we’ll at least be asked to question ourselves before we tweet something potentially embarrassing.