Facebook increases status update character limit to 63,206

Summary:Facebook has increased the status update box character limit to 63,206. That's more than a 12-fold increase over the last limit of 5,000 characters.

Two months ago, Facebook increased its status update character limit from 500 to 5,000. Today, the social network has bumped it up again, this time by a 12-fold increase to 60,000 characters.

As you can see in the screenshot above, this is a huge character count; I honestly don't see why you would ever want to write such a long status update. In fact, when I was testing this limit, Facebook stopped responding in both Microsoft Internet Explorer 9 and Google Chrome when I tried seeing what would happen if I put in 100,000 characters.

Wrestling with my old laptop for a bit longer, I found that the actual limit for Facebook is now 63,206 characters. If you put in more, it will give you an error message with the title "Status Update Too Long." It reads as follows: "Status updates must be less than 63,206 characters. You have entered x characters here. Notes can be much longer. Would you like to edit and post your update as a Note instead?" You are then given two options: Cancel and Edit As Note.

So where does the number 63,206 come from? Facebook engineer Bob Baldwin explains: "I set the exact limit to something nerdy. Facebook ... Face Boo K ... hex(FACE) - K ... 64206 - 1000 = 63206 :-)."

The change to a 63,206-character status update pulls Facebook further away from the 140-character limit that Twitter is so famous for. While Facebook keeps increasing its limit, Twitter is perfectly happy with keeping its tweets limited to 140 characters.

The limit for Google+ appears to be 100,000 characters. When I put in anything over, I was given the following error message: "There was a problem saving your post. Please try again."

See also:

Topics: Social Enterprise

About

Emil is a freelance journalist writing for CNET and ZDNet. Over the years, he has covered the tech industry for multiple publications, including Ars Technica, Neowin, and TechSpot.

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