co Twitter Might Be Sticking It To The Man |

Last month Twitter started its own ad network in a limited fashion. I wrote about that here. Then, the next thing you know, they decide to shut out third party ad networks. Did you see it coming?

Now, they’re threatening to charge big publishers and developers who use Twitter as a primary basis for collecting money on advertising. Websites like Huffington Post, for instance.

Here are my observations on this:

  1. First, Twitter’s got to make money some way so I’m in favor of that.
  2. But I’m not sure what “big” is. Are you?
  3. I agree with Peter Kafka that the Twitter guidelines are pretty vague and it may be that Twitter is just feeling their way through this monetization thing.
  4. Finally, will this ever trickle down to you and me?

Eventually, Twitter is going to get to the place where they will be forced to make shareholders happy and that could come at the expense of its users. Or some of its users. Twitter will begin to put profits ahead of everything else.

That hasn’t happened yet. But if you look at the trends, it happens with most businesses when they reach a certain size. And I think Twitter is headed in that direction. Is that good or bad?

It’s good if you believe in free markets. It’s good if you believe in Twitter.

I, for one, would be glad to see Twitter make some money. I think by doing so it would have a lot more resources at its disposal to run off the riff raff. Unfortunately, someone has to be the guinea pig. The revenue has to start somewhere. So I’m wondering if Twitter has actually started discussing their revenue plans with large publishers like Huffington Post?