Twitter Mulls Digital Payment Option For Users

Twitter is considering another possible significant shakeup of its service, with a drive to open up a possible monetising capability for its users.

The micro-blogging platform is reportedly exploring an option to allow its users to receive tips or digital payments from their followers.

This is the second major shakeup that Twitter is reportedly exploring. Earlier this week Bloomberg reported that Twitter is actually building a subscription product as a way to ease its dependence on advertising, and is also considering adding charges for ‘power’ users of the platform.

Making money

That subscription development should not come as a surprise.

In July 2020 CEO Jack Dorsey confirmed the platform was actively exploring additional ways to make money from its users, including a possible subscription model.

That admission came after Twitter in July last year reported its second quarter results, which revealed a sharp decline in its core advertising business during the Coronavirus pandemic.

The bulk of Twitter’s revenue (like Facebook) stems from targeted advertising, which delivers promoted posts aimed at specific groups of users.

But now Reuters reported that Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, speaking at the virtual Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference, wants to allow users to begin making money from their followers.

Dorsey said the feature would help the social media platform earn more money and engagement from its base of 192 million daily users.

Economic incentive

“I think the first thing we want to focus on is that economic incentive to people who are contributing to Twitter,” Dorsey was quoted as saying.

And it should be noted that by introducing user tipping and new features like content subscriptions would help Twitter diversify its revenue, which it currently earns mainly from selling advertising.

The company said earlier this week during an earnings call with analysts that Dorsey did not expect subscriptions to be meaningful to the company’s revenue until next year, meaning the subscription option could likely be deployed during 2021.

Reuters also notice that Twitter last month bought newsletter startup Revue, as it hopes to attract users wanting to create long-form content.

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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