Monthly Archives: March 2010

Dear Twitter: Please let us opt out of hovercards. Love, everyone

UPDATE: Paul Conroy has created a simple method to disable hovercards. You can grab it here.

What are Hovercards? Twitter explains:

“Hovercards are cards which appear when you hover over a username or avatar. The cards display additional information about the person and allow you to interact with them while staying within the context of your page.” Here’s what that looks like:

I’ve been hearing from a lot of people that this feature is nothing but annoying, that Twitter only developed it to use on sites, and that it should be optional on Leave your comments below as to what is wrong with this feature and I’ll add them to this post.

@helpanelephant says it best:

“Hovercards are awful. They get in my way, often covering adjacent posts as well as the one they come from. I often encounter them accidentally when trying to copy a nearby tweet. There isn’t any way to make them go away, and they can hang there forever.

“Visiting another user’s page to follow or unfollow them isn’t that onerous. I want to see their page and their timeline anyway. If you don’t want to lose your place on your own page, just right-click and open in another window or tab. At a minimum, Twitter needs to put a “close here” on the hovercard, but I’d prefer to get rid of them altogether.”

Reasons Twitter’s Hovercards are annoying and should be disabled or let us opt-out of seeing them:

  1. They popup unexpectedly, blocking the actual message suddenly while we are reading it.
  2. They prevent fast clicking the username
  3. Sometimes they STAY popped up, semi-permanently covering what we’re trying to read.
  4. You can no longer highlight and copy user information.
  5. They pop up unwanted sometimes when trying to copy a nearby tweet.
  6. The additional resources to instantiate hovercards may be slowing down the page.
  7. is most useful as a simple way to read messages. Hovercards break this primary feature.
  8. It’s already easy enough to view someone’s profile. You can just right click on the name and open their link in a new tab.
  9. Mouseover popups are the bane of the internet, penalizing not just accidental but also normal mouse movements. Hovercards are a prime offender.

David Letterman’s “Top Ten Signs You Spend Too Much Time on Twitter”

10. You miss your son’s soccer game waiting for Lady Gaga to post what she had for lunch.

9. You answer the phone: “Twello?”

8: You’ve spent millions developing iPhone waterproofing technology so you can Tweet in the shower.

7. You haven’t touched your CB radio in months.

6. You ask yourself, “What would Jesus Tweet?”

5. You sleep tweet.

4. No number 4 — writer on Twitter.

3. You stopped paying attention to this list after the first 140 characters.

2. Even Ashton Kutcher thinks you tweet too much.

1. You walked in on the landscaper retweeting your wife.

Here’s Mindy Kaling trying to explain Twitter to Dave:

…and don’t miss: You know you are too popular on Twitter when…