updated 09:47 am EST, Tue November 19, 2013
Feature removed without comment by microblogging service
Twitter has backtracked on a design decision that allowed users to receive direct messages from followers without the need to follow them back. The feature, introduced last month and consisted of an opt-in checkbox inside the account settings page, has now been removed with Twitter providing little in the way of explanation.
On being asked by The Next Web why the "accept DMs from anyone" option had been taken away, Twitter responded with a link to a generic page explaining that the company performs a large number of experiments on its user base every day.
The lack of comment from the company over the direct messaging feature makes rumors of a standalone mobile app just for private messages between Twitter accounts all the more likely. Such an move would bring Twitter in line with Facebook and its own Messenger app, which the social network is appearing to make as a more general-purpose messaging application.