Twitter's expanded promoted tweets program starts rollout today

by Knowlton Thomas | Culture

Twitter has long planned an expansion of its promoted tweets program as part of its goal to generate profit.

Rolling out today, Twitter will add paid tweets to users' timelines from companies they may not be following (before, paid tweets would only appear if you followed that company). Not everyone will see these tweets immediately. Right now, less than 10% of users will see them as the microblogging platform gradually expands this new ad system.

It may sound spammy to some, but rest assured: paid tweets will still try to target relevant users, not everyone—"A promoted tweet will appear in a user's timeline only if the tweet is likely to be interesting and relevant to that user," reads Twitter's blog. "Our platform uses a variety of signals to determine which promoted tweets are relevant to users, including what a user chooses to follow, how they interact with a tweet, what they retweet, and more."

I've seen plenty of users complaining, but I must ask, why? Twitter is a company, you know, a business. That means it needs to make money or it will cease to exist. Ads are naturally the ideal revenue generator for its model. So, would you rather have flash popups eating data and slowing page load speeds? Paid tweets are reasonably subtle, easily ignorable, and a refreshing alternative to most online ads I come across these days. Let's accept them and tweet on.

San Francisco, California, United States

Twitter is a privately funded startup with offices in the SoMA neighborhood of San Francisco, CA. Started as a side project in March of 2006, Twitter has grown into a real-time short messaging service that works over multiple networks and devices. In countries all around the world, people follow the sources most relevant to them and access information via Twitter as it happens—from breaking... more

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Knowlton Thomas

Knowlton Thomas

Knowlton is the managing editor of Techvibes and author of Tempest Bound. Based in Vancouver, Knowlton has been published in national publications and has also appeared on television and radio. Previously he was an editor for New Westminster weekly The Other Press and served on its board of directors. When not working, Knowlton enjoys hiking, tennis, and martial arts. more

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