Google to gobble Twitter

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google_small.jpgADOTAS — I use Twitter less to post than to find out what others are talking about and that seems to be its edge against oblivion.

As the Mumbai attack and the Hudson plane landing bubbled up, it was news from Twitter that swept me up. I along with millions of others have questioned how the thing is going to make money. The microblogging site, which has raised $20 million in funding and rebuffed Facebook, has few revenue streams. One option might be to charge companies for brand verification and for targeted prompts for users to join company feeds rather than straightforward web advertising.

But what if its obvious use, search, is its strongest selling point?

John Battelle likens Google’s purchase of YouTube to what the search giant should/could be thinking about Twitter. He says that YouTube’s biggest asset was as a massive search engine.  And now, ” what’s the most important and quickly growing form of search on the web today? Real time, conversational search. And who’s the YouTube of real time search? Yep. Twitter. It’s an asset Google cannot afford to not own, and also, one they most likely do not have the ability (or brand permission) to build on their own.”

Google has the cash, unlike the paper Facebook owns, and could pull it off.

— Express your opinion, comment below.

4 COMMENTS

  1. Google is an increadible search engine, but I would be concerned that the moment they start monetizing Twitter, users will start flying the coop. Its very lean, ad-free interface is its appeal.

  2. Ed,

    I saw the Battelle post and I’m glad you posted about it. The YouTube acquisition was huge at the time for Google, but Twitter, for me, seems like an even greater opportunity for the search mogul. Twitter lacks the content restrictions that YouTube is unfortunately bound by, making Twitter’s and Google’s philosophies sync more in line.

    Perhaps Yahoo! can make a move here before Google? Now THAT would make things very exciting.

  3. Twitter will be monetized in some fashion or it will seek to have a purpose and backing. It has already been monetized in that VC’s see it obviously having potential and therefore decided to fund it.

    Any outward facing “ad face/space” or overt capitalization of the interface of course needs to be carefully considered to best served all users, but it does not have to be a scenario where marketing = doom.

    Either way Twitter should focus on themselves and keep the vultures at bay.

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