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A new Twitter test puts a bunch of current events across the top of user timelines

Twitter is trying help people find popular events.

@JaeHokes / Twitter

Twitter is testing a new way to show people what others on the service are talking about: It’s putting a list of popular events right at the top of some users’ timelines.

We first discovered the test thanks to a screenshot shared by Twitter user @JaeHokes, who appears to be part of an experimental test group. The new feature includes a label that reads “happening now” and is a carousel of small Twitter cards, each representing a different current event or conversation happening on Twitter.

You can scroll left or right through the cards; when you click on one of them, you’re then taken to a timeline of tweets specifically focused on that event.

Images shared with us from @JaeHokes show cards for a number of live sporting events that Twitter is not broadcasting, so it’s safe to assume this feature won’t just highlight Twitter’s live video efforts (though it seems possible they could be included).

Twitter has been trying for years to hit upon a great way to help people find all of the content happening on its service. Right now, finding stuff on mobile requires clicking into the app’s “explore” tab, which includes things like trends and moments. Twitter newbies might not even know that stuff is there.

It’s hard to miss when it’s right at the top of your timeline, though. Putting some of the most popular stuff up top might encourage more people to tune in for major events, like the NBA finals or James Comey’s testimony. (It’s similar to the user interface model Instagram has used for its relatively new Stories feature, which has worked well.)

A Twitter spokesperson confirmed that the new feature is a test, but declined to comment further. Twitter tests new features a lot, and there’s no guarantee this will make it to all users. But Twitter’s head of product, Keith Coleman, did reply to @JaeHokes and said, “Still in experiment phase, but hold tight!”

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