You may have recently noticed one or two tweets in your Twitter timeline from profiles that you’ve never followed. And not just those clearly marked sponsored tweets. Luckily, you’re not losing your mind. Those odd tweets are actually part of a recent test by Twitter, who have been quietly inserting tweets into your feed based on your interests.
According to a statement on their blog, the experiment is part of an ongoing drive to “improve user experience”, and an attempt to put the user in touch with relevant tweets and feeds they may otherwise be missing. At the moment, the experiment is not currently configured to reach everyone, however the main concern coming to light is that boundary between privacy is getting thinner and thinner.
Unsurprisingly, the site has already received plenty of public backlash for implementing the test on the hush. Twitter users have expressed plenty of negative criticism in reply to the below announcement, with many feeling that the experiment should have been conducted in a more transparent way, and that a clear choice should always be given when entrusted user data is at stake.
We’re testing & exploring ways to include Tweets in your timeline we think you’ll find interesting or entertaining: https://t.co/K9zqg5nTg0
— Twitter (@twitter) October 17, 2014