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Twitter launches button letting you send direct messages from any website

A picture shows the search tab for Twitter on a computer screen in Frankfurt.


Twitter has launched a feature that continues to extend its reach beyond the service’s apps. The company today introduced a new button for websites that’ll allow site visitors to message administrators and customer support representatives through Twitter’s Direct Messages capability.

As part of its strategy around live conversations, the creation of a website button is another step in the direction of showing why Twitter should be relevant in everyday issues. But Twitter is not the first to think about this — other services in the space include Intercom and Zendesk. Even Facebook has been exploring the inclusion of call-to-action buttons to communicate with businesses directly.

In order for this button to work, the business will need to modify its Twitter account setting to receive direct messages from anyone. From here, they can embed the new message button on their site after configuring it with the right Twitter handle and user ID.

Where this will come in handy is in customer service, especially if you’re trying to buy something or have questions. What Twitter doesn’t want you to do is to not even consider Twitter when you have feedback, instead turning to chatbots on Facebook Messenger, Kik, or Slack; using email; or even calling the company’s support number.

Embedding Twitter Message Buttons

Years ago, the direct message route may not have been feasible because of its 140-character restriction. After all, if a customer has a complaint, they’re not going to endure having to compose numerous messages just to be heard — they just want to air their grievances or thoughts. Fortunately Twitter has since modified the limit to 10,000 characters.

This isn’t the first embeddable button that Twitter has — other buttons allow you to share content, follow accounts, mention someone, and participate in a hashtag conversation — but none were really geared towards private discussions that someone may have. This new button streamlines the process, but will it actually persuade people to use Twitter in order to address concerns?

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About Ms. A. C. Kennedy

Ms. A. C. Kennedy
My name is Ms A C Kennedy and I am a Health practitioner and Consultant by day and a serial blogger by night. I luv family, life and learning new things. I especially luv learning how to improve my business. I also luv helping and sharing my information with others. Don't forget to ask me anything!

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There's a good reason why security analysts get nervous about bundled third-party software: it can introduce vulnerabilities that the companies can't control. And Microsoft, unfortunately, has learned that the hard way. Google researcher Tavis Ormandy discovered that a Windows 10 image came bundled with a third-party password manager, Keeper, which came with a glaring browser plugin flaw -- a malicious website could steal passwords. Ormandy's copy was an MSDN image meant for developers, but Reddit users noted that they received the vulnerable copy of Keeper after clean reinstalls of regular copies and even a brand new laptop.

A Microsoft spokesperson told Ars Technica that the Keeper team had patched the exploit (in response to Ormandy's private disclosure), so it shouldn't be an issue if your software is up to date. Also, you were only exposed if you enabled the plugin.

However, the very existence of the hole has still raised a concern: are Microsoft's security tests as thorough for third-party apps as its own software? The company has declined to comment, but that kind of screening may prove crucial if Microsoft is going to maintain the trust of Windows users. It doesn't matter how secure Microsoft's code is if a bundled app undermines everything.

Source: Monorail, Tavis Ormandy (Twitter)

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