AI in Twitter: 7 Ways Twitter Uses AI to Improve Its Platform​

AI in Twitter: 7 Ways Twitter Uses AI to Improve Its Platform

Ever since Elon Musk took over Twitter in a $44 billion deal, there has been a lot of conversation around what the future would look like for the social media giant.

There has been a lot of chatter about what changes the new Twitter owner might bring. Some suggest these changes could entail free speech or Twitter spam bots or some basic features like Tweet edit, etc.

While this is all speculation at the moment, today, we’ll take a step back and look at some of the existing features of Twitter. Particularly, we’ll look at how one of the biggest social media platforms utilizes artificial intelligence (AI).

So let’s get started.

Top 7 applications of AI in Twitter

​​Twitter is among the top 3 social networking apps in the US. It boasts a global user base of around 400 million. After acquiring an AI startup called Magic Pony in 2016, it further boosted its AI capabilities. Let’s discuss 7 such applications of AI in Twitter.

1. Fighting hate speech

Social media often becomes a hotbed for hate speech. Twitter, understandably, also became a hub for hate speech and similar conversations.

After being criticized (rightfully so) for not taking action against preventing hate speech, Twitter turned to AI to help combat this issue.

Roughly 500 million tweets are sent each day. Manually identifying potentially harmful content in such a huge number of tweets every day is not possible. That’s why AI comes in handy.

The automated algorithms can comb through millions and millions of tweets and then flag inappropriate content for further review by the Twitter team.

These days, AI in Twitter is being used to identify racist content, hate speech, content from extremist groups, content promoting terrorism, etc.

Along with identifying such content, AI-powered bots can also take down accounts that promote hate speech.

Fighting Hate Speech in Twitter

2. Automatically cropping photos

Not only the most obvious benefits, Twitter also utilizes AI to make subtle changes to improve user experience.

One such example is cropping images on Twitter. Introduced in 2018, this feature uses AI to automatically crop photos using face detection. It then creates a thumbnail for the entire image.

This feature utilizes machine learning (ML) that studies eye tracking. Using eye-tracking records, the AI figures out the area people look at in a picture the most. This helps figure out the most appealing part of a photograph which is then displayed to users as a thumbnail.

3. Managing the Twitter timeline

AI is also responsible for managing the tweets that appear on your feed. An AI algorithm predicts the tweets a user would like to see the most.

Twitter uses natural language processing (NLP) and tweet-ranking algorithms to analyze thousands of tweets per second. Over time, it becomes better at predicting what tweets the user would find most interesting. These tweets are then displayed first rather than in reverse chronological order.

Basically, an AI model collects and analyzes all the tweets since the user’s last visit. Each tweet is then given a relevance score, indicating the likelihood of the user finding a certain tweet interesting. Eventually, a collection of tweets with higher scores are shown up at the top.

As of now, Twitter also offers users the option to choose between an AI-powered algorithmic feed or a basic chronological feed.

4. Customizing the ‘What’s happening’ section

The ‘What’s happening’ section in the Twitter feed comes in handy if you want to keep yourself updated with the current events. This tab on the homepage of Twitter shows you the key highlights of what’s happening around you based on your location and the accounts you follow.

Think of it as a personalized news feed. It highlights trending stories and gives real-time updates on it.

This feature too is powered by AI and utilizes AI models to customize the content for different users.

Customizing the ‘What’s happening’ section​-Dresma

5. Improving ‘Who to follow’ suggestions

Twitter uses AI algorithms to suggest users the accounts they can follow. These personalized suggestions are based on users’ contact lists as well as their location, activity, accounts followed, tweets interacted with, etc.

6. Optimizing Twitter ads

Twitter applies AI to its ads, making it possible to combine different variables. It enables Twitter to generate automatic ads based on a large number of variables, suggesting the one that’s most profitable.

It can automatically identify ads with higher CTR and ROI to deliver the best results with the smallest investment. The campaign can then focus solely on ads that can actually get results.

Moreover, since it’s based on AI, it only gets better over time.

7. Creating Twitter bots

A Twitter bot can perform tasks resembling those of a human user like liking Tweets, following people, or sending replies. These bots are created and managed via the Twitter API.

Bots are among the most divisive features of Twitter.

While the entire conversation regarding Twitter bots has been around spam bots used by scammers, it has many benefits too. These Twitter bots can come in handy by automating certain tasks like posting polls, sending automated replies, etc.

Whether Twitter bots are malicious or not depends on who is deploying these bots and what for. Basically, it depends on how people choose to use these bots.

Twitter Bots


As a new era of Twitter begins under Elon Musk, it needs to be seen how the platform evolves. But whatever the future will be, AI will remain a core part of Twitter.

What are your views on using AI in Twitter? Is there any feature we forgot to mention? Let us know in the comments.

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