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How to stop Twitter feeds automatically refreshing

The Twitter apps have started doing something new, something annoying. Any time there is a substantial number of new tweets, your feed refreshes automatically, and scrolls all the way up. It doesn’t care if you’re reading anything. It just scrolls up and you lose your place in your feed. The good news is, you can change one little setting and stop Twitter feeds automatically refreshing.

Stop Twitter feeds automatically refreshing

Open Twitter and tap your profile icon at the top left. In the navigation drawer that opens, tap ‘Settings and Privacy’. On the Settings and Privacy screen, tap ‘Accessibility’.

On the Accessibility screen, look for and turn off the ‘Reduce Motion’ option. That will do the job. The next time your Twitter feed has new tweets, regardless of how many there are, your feed will not refresh.

You will still see the little notification in the app that tells you some of the more popular accounts that you followed have tweeted something but, the feed won’t scroll up.

It’s not clear if this is a new feature, or if Twitter just decided to enable it by default after an update. The in-app notification has been a part of the Twitter apps for a long time. When a user tapped this notification, the feed scrolled to the top. The scrolling was an action that had to be initiated by the user. Now, it’s doing it on its own which makes for a poor browsing experience.

Turning this option off will have small side-effects. Twitter can show you live engagement stats e.g., if you’re reading a Tweet that has a certain number of retweets, and is actively getting more retweets, the number under the Tweet card will update. Turning ‘Reduce Motion’ off will disable this live count as it’s a part of the animations that the app has.

Automatically refreshing a feed, regardless of what the platform is, is never a good idea. Facebook does this and it is one of the more annoying aspects of the social network. When a feed refreshes on Facebook, it’s almost impossible to find something again because the feed itself is curated and generated by Facebook. You are not getting a chronological view of all updates. It’s the same for Twitter. By default, Twitter apps show you popular tweets unless you switch over to the chronological view. It is still possible to find your place again in your feed but that may not always hold true if you follow a lot of accounts.

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