Day 5 of #YSJ10DoT: Tweeting Media and Polls

We started tweeting on Day 2 and covered how to include URLs to other websites in tweets. Including signposts to other content is one way of making your tweets more attractive and engaging – adding media (video, images, gifs) is another. Twitter’s own analysis of two million Tweets sent by thousands of users over one month confirmed that adding video, links and photos all boost the number of ‘Retweets’ you receive, i.e. the number of people who re-post your tweet to their followers:

    • Photos average a 35% boost in Retweets
    • Videos get a 28% boost
    • Hashtags (Day 7) receive a 16% boost

Adding images to your tweets

  • Begin a tweet as normal
  • If you’re using the web, click Add photos or video. If you’re using a mobile Twitter app, tap the camera icon to take a photo or to choose an existing photo from your library.
  • Once a photo is selected, you will see a thumbnail image or the image file name appear as an attachment. You can select up to 4 images to tweet at once. Photos can be up to 5MB in GIF, JPEG or PNG files format.
  • To remove an image file you’ve selected, click or tap the x on the image thumbnail (or next to the file name).
  • Some mobile Twitter apps will allow you to enhance, apply a filter, or crop an image once you select it.
  • To tag up to 10 people in your photo, select Who’s in this photo? and type in a full name or an @ username and then tap Done. A person’s security settings will determine if you can tag them or not. To remove a tag, tap the tag and then the backspace or delete button. You can only do this before you tweet the photo. You can’t remove tags from a photo once it is tweeted.
  • Tap/click Tweet to post your message and photo(s). An uploaded Media attachment does not count towards the 280 character limit, however a linked photo will still count as 23 characters.

Using GIFs


Twitter now supports the use of animated GIFs in Tweets. These are short animations or videos that will play on repeat alongside your tweet. You might include a GIF in your tweet to stress your point or let others know your thinking on something in a quick, humorous way. You can find GIFs on sites like Giphy, or you can make your own. Twitter also has an inbuilt GIF library to choose from.

To post a GIF in a Tweet via the web:

  1. Type your Tweet into the box at the top of your Home timeline, or click the Tweet button.
  2. Click the Media button to upload a photo or GIF from your computer. (Tip: Read about how to include a video in your Tweet here.).
  3. To search for and select a GIF from the GIF library, click the GIF icon (Note: Animated GIFs cannot be included in Tweets with multiple images. You can send only one GIF per Tweet.)
  4. Once a photo or GIF is selected, it will attach to your Tweet in full size.
  5. Click Tweet to post.
  6. Tip: You can also send photos and GIFs in Direct Messages. You can find more information here.

Twitter Polls


Twitter Polls allow you to weigh in on questions posed by other people on Twitter. You can also easily create your own poll and see the results instantly.

You can create your own Twitter Poll on the web or in the Twitter app (iOS or Android).

To create a poll on the desktop version of Twitter:

  1. Click into the compose box at the top of your Home timeline, or click the Tweet button in the top navigation bar.
  2. Click the Add poll icon
  3. Type your poll question into the main compose box. You can use up to the max characters in your poll question.
  4. Insert your first poll option into the Choice 1 box, and your second poll option into the Choice 2 box. You can use up to 25 characters for each option.
  5. Click + Add a choice to add additional options to your poll. Your poll can have up to four options.
  6. Your poll’s duration defaults to 1 day. You can change the duration of your poll by clicking 1 day and adjusting the days, hours, and minutes. The minimum amount of time for a poll is 5 minutes, and the maximum is 7 days.
  7. Click Tweet to post the poll.

Adding video to your tweets

social media share iconsYou may want to share a useful video you’ve found on YouTube, Vimeo, TED or TED-Ed – perhaps of a presentation or talk, or public engagement. You could also share something you’ve uploaded yourself – Media Library lecture recordings, for example. If the video is already on the web somewhere, you should check to see if there is a Share to Twitter button or icon alongside the video. If so, just select that and it will take you to a new tweet box (you might be prompted to log in first) with the URL to that video already in the tweet. If there is no Share to Twitter icon alongside the video, simply copy the URL to the webpage and paste it into your tweet, as we did in Day 2.

If you want to create a new video and upload it to Twitter, you can do this using the Twitter for iOS or Twitter for Android mobile apps. You can also create a live video on Twitter.

How to record a video for a tweet (available on iOS and Android apps):

  • Begin a tweet as normal.
  • Tap the Add photos or video icon next to the GIF icon, then tap the Video icon to begin video record icon in Twitter app
  • Tap and hold down the record button to record a video. You can tap and hold down again to add more to your video. The total recording can be up to 2 minutes and 20 seconds.
  • You can edit or delete part of the video before you tweet it. Drag a particular video clip upwards to delete that part of video before tweeting it. You can also change the order of video clips by dragging and moving the clips sideways.
  • When you finish recording your video, tap Done (Preview the video or make additional edits by tapping the play button before tweeting).
  • To remove the video before tweeting, tap the x icon beside the video thumbnail.
  • Tap Tweet to post your message and video. 

How to tweet a video previously recorded on your device (iOS apps only):

  • Begin a tweet as normal. Your camera roll will display below the tweet text area.
  • From your camera roll, select the video you want to tweet.

Trim video screenshot

  • If you are happy with the video as it is, tap Done in the top-right corner. If you want to trim the beginning and/or end off your video, move the markers on your videoTrim video screenshottimeline right and left and tap Trim in the top right corner. Then tap Done.
  • Add your tweet text and tap Tweet.

How to create live videos on Twitter (iOS and Android apps):

It is now possible to create live videos. Simply click on the the feather quill and begin a tweet as normal. Then, tap the live video icon. You can end a live video any time by tapping end video. You will need to give permission for the app to access your camera and your microphone as well.

Complete an ActivityActivity!

See what interesting things you come across today, online and in ‘the real world’, and remember to tweet it to your followers. Include a link (URL), image or video in at least one tweet. (Don’t forget to use the hashtag #YSJ10DoT)

Optional extra: If you’re already familiar with tweeting media, why not tweet your own poll too?

Suzy (@SuzyYSJ)

Further reading:

<<< Day 4: @Replies, Mentions & Direct Messaging Day 6: Retweeting >>>

Creative Commons LicenseTen Days of Twitter for Learning Developers was originally adapted from a similar programme for STEM researchers, also created by Helen Webster. The materials are available under a Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-SA.

The 10DoT Badges are adapted from those issued by University of Sussex’s Technology Enhanced Learning Team, which were also licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Creative Commons LicenseTen Days of Twitter has been adapted by Technology Enhanced Learning for use at YSJ, and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 Unported License.

We are extremely grateful for the work put in by Helen Webster and the LD5Digital Things team, and for sharing their great resources with the community!

Suzy Mills

Working to the Directorate’s annual objectives and the TEL Quality Framework, Suzy’s role as TEL Assistant is to proactively support and develop staff in using technology to enhance the students learning experience. Her main focus will be the day to day management and administration of the VLE and other learning technologies. Suzy joins the TEL team from the School Administration Unit, where she worked as a School Administrator for five years. Suzy is interested in developing her knowledge of how learning technologies can be used in Higher Education and exploring the use of Open Badges.

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