While Facebook is not a company known for pot jokes, the company has decided to limit status updates posted through applications to 420 characters, in contrast to Twitter’s 140 character limit. The status message length was confirmed via a quick post published by Facebook this afternoon, notifying developers of changes to the stream.publish API call.
Due to complications, any status updates that include attachments will be published as general stream stories and will not have the status updated at the top of a user’s profile. While Facebook has limited status updates to 420 characters for some time now, this is the first time we’ve seen Facebook publicly acknowledge the limit. Makes one wonder when this limit was imposed and how it was determined.
My guess is that it was an arbitrary number but one would imagine it was somewhat of a youthful decision to chose this limit. Rather than dwelling on the status update length, I’ll let any developers go check out the stream.publish API documentation.