Aside from all the self promotion/aggrandizing ‘look at me’ drivel, I spend considerably more time trying to shorten my message while keeping it comprehensible then forming the thought for the tweet.
Twitter debuted before smart phones, when you paid per text message, and mobile data connections were very expensive. The 140 character limit is there so people can Tweet via text message. To this day text messages are still limited to 160 characters. Twitter reserved the extra 20 characters for user names. Today, depending on what network you’re on smartphones generally send a big chunks of text either via MMS, or they’re automatically split up into several SMS messages and automatically put back together on the receiving party’s phone.
In the modern world pretty much anyone interested in using Twitter more than likely has a smart phone with the Twitter app. I’d like to see the stats but my guess is SMS tweeting is used relatively rarely outside of tech-starved countries. The only reason I could see for a North American or European user to Tweet via SMS is if they have run out of data or to save the minuscule amount of data loading up their Twitter feed uses.
Let the people stuck using SMS with feature phones be limited by their phone’s limitations. For the rest of us do away with the character cap or at least make it more generous.
Then again if you take away the character cap what do you have left? Essentially, a stripped down version of Facebook statuses.