nice post by @zeynep tufekci about how twitter better understands engagement metrics than what their users actually want from their service, and how those interests are often in conflict
Pretty obvious the people who design Twitter use it in a unique way, and want to enforce that way more broadly. “Favorite” was chosen specifically, not “like”, which is the non-public social signal @zeynep describes. But, for Twitter, both RT and fave are public, where favorites are literally a collection of your favorite tweets. Notice how the new Twitter profile pages put your list of favorite tweets right up there with your followers and following. That design decision only makes sense in the context of wanting faves to be broadcast-style content, because putting a list of non-broadcast social signals this up-front would be strange (and it is strange to see my faves counted and put up front like that). Twitter's intention isn't to broadcast a non-broadcast signal but instead change the non-broadcast behavior into a broadcast one, to enforce their way of using the service on their diverse set of users. This is where the ends of the company (more broadcast behaviors thus more content and more engagement) comes into friction to what many users want from the fave: a non-broadcast social signal.