Twitter has announced that links shared on Twitter.com will be automatically shortened using the service’s t.co URL shortener.
Links of any length will be cut down to a tidy number of characters — 19, to be precise — and an ellipsis when the sender clicks the Tweet button.
Although each link is assigned a unique t.co link ID, the links will appear on Twitter as abbreviated versions of their originals so users always have some idea of where their next click will take them — a smart move on Twitter’s part given the number of URL-shortened spam or scam links that have made the rounds on the microblogging platform over the past year or so.
Still, you can expect to see plenty of other URL shorteners floating around Twitter — especially ones like Hootsuite that give their users a full analytics rundown for each link. Twitter said users can still use any third-party link-shortening services on Twitter.com.
Here’s what the automated URL shortening will look like on the web app: