Feedback for "Upcoming Changes to PNG Image Support"



@citrusui thanks for sharing that! It’s a very fun little tool. I wouldn’t recommend it as secure, but fun decoder ring type of messages :slight_smile:

Maintaining the original unmodified image is not going to be possible, I’m afraid. I see what you are saying, but technically is not practical on our side. That tool, though, could be made to work in a number of different ways. It could do images in PNG8 format (256 characters possible should be more than enough, though it will obviously make the resolution larger). Perhaps even having the tool output a JPEG itself that we won’t transcode would be possible, though probably a lot more complicated than the simple array of characters as pixels/subpixels approach.

I’m sorry this is likely going to no longer work, but I am always impressed with the fun things people build and use on top of Twitter. I’m interested to see what the next iteration will look like.


@Lahiss, thank you for replying.

I can understand not trusting the words from Twitter as PR spiel and that the uses case you care about feel actively targeted.

I want to refer to another response I gave that shares more context on why this is happening, and specifically how we are trying to add compromises into the change to support artists.

I understand if 85% JPEG is not redeemable for you. We have pushed the quality meter up as high as we can manage, which eclipses most competitors who stop at 70-72%. I hope we can figure out a path forward for art that cannot be compromised with compression, we aren’t going to stop with this change.


Then make a compromise. Display compressed (and possibly downscaled too) versions, but make unchanged original uploads (That were only checked on to make sure that the author isn’t uploading a 51200x51200 pixels absurd-res =) ) accessible through a hyperlink under the image. That would be best of both worlds - allowing people with poor internet connection to see something, and for those who’ll want the original quality - there would be a text link to click.

Well, obviously. This is a desperate hack to force twitter to not compress images, not to get a compact file.


@Lahiss you’re right. Less people will load the second step image, just the people that really care. But for the users that look at the image in place on Twitter, far more users will be able to see the image now. The people around the world that are themselves artists and fans can now partake in a community they care about when before they were excluded because they are stuck with bad internet, which is not their fault.

It’s a compromise – completely true. Technologies will continue to improve and my hope is that things can get better in the future.


i’m an artist that uses twitter, and my feedback is: do. not. do. this. PLEASE.

it is so, so hard to promote your art on sites like instagram and facebook that insist on compressing everything into a gross jpeg. often, the inevitable artifacting washes out details as well as signatures (which contributes to art becoming orphaned, as people with no discretion save and repost it across websites repeatedly, further destroying the quality).

compression is less noticeable on photographs, but for something like a digital painting, it can make a HUGE difference. if you do this, you will remove artists’ control over the images we’re trying to post and add a really frustrating wheel-of-fortune element where we won’t actually know if something is going to look good until we post it.

i’ve read the thread, i’ve read your explanation, i understand and appreciate what you’re trying to do. please reconsider the method. this is not a good solution; find a different way. this is really going to harm the art community and we are already being kicked out or mistreated in basically every other widely-used online space right now. :frowning:

eta: i see you’re promising a lot of “better in the future” and “continuing to improve” and sorry, “maybe technology will progress to the point that this isn’t a problem” is not a good enough answer when you’re breaking a feature that we’ve already had for a long time, and alienating existing users in the process. a nebulous “someday it will probably be better” does not help us in the present. reducing functionality that already exists is ALWAYS, always, always a mistake. i think you can do better than this “compromise” (not to mention, it’s not a compromise when one party is being dragged into it with almost no opportunity for input; almost no one in the art community on twitter knows this feedback thread exists because twitter is never transparent about upcoming bad idea implementation until it’s too late to turn things around).

eta #2: i can’t imagine brand accounts will be happy that any non-photographic images they post will get crunched. this also negatively affects things like logos and graphic design. jpeg is just garbage for basically anything that isn’t a photo. :\


There’s already a group of users theory crafting a way around this change when the update drops. They’ll be forcing the compressed jpegs to be larger than the uncompressed pngs with the help of complex border patterns filling the unused aspect ratio; this will just push file sizes and costs UP, which is exactly what everyone here doesn’t want?? In the end, you will just have to compress everything and we’ll just end up leaving :broken_heart:


As an artist, this is incredibly disheartening. If this is implemented, it’ll be the final reason myself, and many other artists will leave the site due to poor image quality, underutilized UI/tagging systems, and general harassment and theft of art on the site. A lot of artists have only remained due to having a semi-consistent way to upload high quality PNG’s with small transparent pixels to the site. With a large insurgence of artists due to Tumblr’s recent policy changes, it feels more like you’re shooting yourself in the foot than promoting a community and culture for artists and creators. New users coming from tumblr won’t have qualms with jumping ship yet again, deleting and deactivating accounts for a better platform. If you implement this kind of scaling and update, you’ll be losing a lot of accounts, and users due to an inability to produce quality results. Please listen to your user base, especially artists who use your site to share their creations, and continue to allow PNG uploads on all images without conversion.


~We can’t support displaying a thumbnail and putting a link to the full size because there’s not enough flashy tech in it.

Let’s be real. You people don’t care at all about people who can’t afford or can’t access high speed internet. You just want to save a couple bucks on hosting and think your users will swallow whatever you do. The fact they use a neural network to crop photos says everything you need to know. That isn’t more efficient and doesn’t serve anyone better than just behaving predictably, but I bet it sure looks good on someone’s resume.

Time to find somewhere else to post actual decent images since these tools aren’t going to listen to what anyone outside their bubble has to say.


@NolanOBrien So, the test hasn’t yet been implemented, then? Because right now my smaller png file IS getting compressed into a jpeg, despite the jpeg being bigger when I save my own version at the same resolution and 85% quality. Something’s funky there.

This whole thing sucks big time and is going to be a factor in my search for alternatives to Twitter in the future.


As this is an issue for an edge case, the best aproach is to display an option to upload uncompressed photos:
This option can be as hidden as Twitter wants, for example by hiding it by default until the user enables it deep into the Settings page.

Whatsapp does this, it compresses images by default but you can still send JPEGs as files so they are sent uncompressed, this option is “hidden” for the 99% of users.





The test will be part of the changes that are rolling out starting February 11th, so you are correct that they will not be applied to images uploaded today.


Hi there, pixel artist here.

I am deeply concerned at this new update and the possible impacts on the artists on Twitter. I’ve read the posts and I must agree with the other posters this will add a huge restriction onto artists, as a sizable portion and the people I know use PNGs simply because of its versatility and lossless quality, it is the perfect file format for web use.

As for pixel art this is also rather worrying as while in most cases the amount of colours used in the art are limited, if the image is converted into a JPEG upon posting it would be highly irritating visually, because transparency will be replaced by a white background and artifacts will ruin the visuals. This does not necessarily exclusively apply to spriters, other digital artists will experience the same frustrations too.

I must question if sacrificing quality in favour of faster image loading time is truly necessary. A lot of artists and their supporting userbases who are originally from Tumblr has moved to here as they found the new content policy as highly unpopular. Having moved to a new service only to find a new restriction added will probably prompt artists to be discouraged from using Twitter as a platform for art and fragment or stunt the growth of communities. I strongly ask you and the rest of the developers to reconsider if the new update is truly worth it.

Even if it is true a majority of the world is unable to load PNGs rapidly due to large data usage, and the feedback written in here does not change your mind. Will you promise to the artists that in the future as long as technology developed and refined, will you give more opportunities to the artists to allow more PNGs to be used over JPEGs?


And what happens when Imgur starts doing the same thing? Or when the user’s content doesn’t fit Imgur’s political views, content policies, etc? Where do artists go then?


They can’t even make pages so I don’t have to go through an account all in one go without losing my place or a gallery of the images on an account and I need an extension just to easily open images in a new tab because they use weird script objects instead of HTML. They probably don’t have anyone on their team who is even capable of such a task, it’s too simple and straightforward and standards-compliant. It doesn’t “innovate.”


Stop begging a corporate giant to throw you scraps and go to a platform that respects artists and sees their work as valid, like Newgrounds.

And now art collectors and content creators and such who have working internet are excluded from getting or posting the content they want. But I guess they’re “privileged” or something, so excluding them is OK right?


I often see my peers complaining about how many sites (especially Twitter) have a good hold on the youth as a market, and yet don’t know what they did to actually run the business as well as they do. Twitter doesn’t have the right values in mind for it’s users, they often say.
Aside from a few gripes, i love twitter. But to tell you the truth the biggest reason I use the website is to follow artists. I don’t see too many artists sticking on the site if they cant upload their art in high quality. Even if twitter is working with artists, many artists I follow are very confused by this move. Especially given that now is the time more than ever to be capitalizing off of the massive amount of users migrating from Tumblr. Artists can adapt, they always do, but make sure that artists are adapting by knowing how to easily upload their art in full quality, not by leaving your website.


@NolanOBrien Would you be able to specify who may be effected by this? You said its users who have 2G internet, which at this time is outdated. Are we talking certain countries or users who are using outdated cellphone data plans because they don’t care about having powerful powerful internet on the go.

It might be very likely that these types of users may not be the users who artists are interested in delivering their content to at which point a

  1. “image cannot be displayed due to network timeout” error message or

  2. pushing out a more compressed version of that image to those specific 2G users while retaining the quality for all other high speed interent users

might be a more feasible solution in the immediate until other parts of the world/archaic cellphone providers catch up.

Not to say artists don’t want to share their work with the world, but most pixel artists, indie game developers, animators ect. are looking to share their content with other high probability consumers/fans and will not care if their content can’t say be delivered to some remote place in Russia or someone’s grandma who is happy using an old Nokia phone with 2G so she can just continue messaging her grandkids.

Are these 50% of people in the world who use 2G, people who would actually be interested in using Twitter or are they for the most part users who use their phones solely for making phone calls?

I’m just curious what the extent of your research has been into this particular user base with slow internet speeds.

It looks like the vast majority of the world will not support 2G by 2020:


Lastly, 50% of the world also may not be able to watch Netflix but that doesn’t mean Netflix needs to serve up 480p videos for all its users just because some people in the world don’t yet have the ability to stream their content or some blue colar construction worker who wants the cheapest possible cellphone plan can’t watch his Netflix dramas while he’s on lunch break.

Just because a market exists doesn’t mean its efficient or ideal to step back the user experience for all users for a body of users who may not care to use the service in the first place.


Just a reminder that the rules of this forum require respectful discussion. Please moderate your language. Thank you.


Hello! Firstly, thanks for allowing us to give feedback for this possible update. I truly believe that this update is unfriendly to its users and will hurt artists significantly, if not lethally to that large portion of users. As for myself, I use Twitter primarily for art, and this update would be devastating to myself, my friends, and others who use Twitter for fun, their livelihoods (as commissioners can see their art and decide to commission them themselves), or to grow as a user and/or as a small business. This update is unneeded and will only hurt your users. As one post put it simply, “Don’t fix what isn’t broken.”

Thanks for listening.