X/Twitter Is Shutting Down Circles Next Month

X/Twitter Is Shutting Down Circles Next Month

Twitter, recently renamed X, is shutting down its Circles feature. Circles allows users to share posts with select people rather than all of their followers but it seems Elon Musk would prefer people just put it all out there or keep it to themselves. The feature will be removed next month, just over one year after Circles became widely available on the platform.

“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,” X said on its support page.

Circles launched in August of last year but encountered glitches that directly opposed the feature’s goal, such as making semi-private tweets public. Posts meant for a limited audience, meaning those in the user’s inner “Circle” were pushed out to millions of people in April. The bug resulted in Circles tweets appearing in the For You feeds, and in some cases, appeared for users who weren’t following the person who originally posted it.

X, then Twitter, didn’t fix the bug until a month later, calling it a “security incident” in an email viewed by Fortune but didn’t address how the glitch happened in the first place. “We’ve conducted a thorough investigation to understand how this occurred and have addressed this issue,” Twitter said in the email sent to users.

Yoel Roth, X’s former head of trust and safety, warned users about privacy issues after he resigned in December, telling TechCrunch: “If protected tweets stop working, run, because that’s a symptom that something is deeply wrong.”

The company has not explained why it is now shutting down the Circles feature or if it has anything to do with past glitches but instead, might be redirecting its focus to its Communities feature which was added in 2021. Communities work similarly to Circles and in many ways mirror subreddits by allowing people to create and join a “Community,” where they can post tweets directly to other members, rather than to the entirety of their followers.

Gizmodo reached out to X for comment but received the response: “Busy now. Check back later.”

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