Liz Gannes

Recent Posts by Liz Gannes

Twitter Partner Gnip Raises $2M for Social Media Monitoring Data

Gnip, which helps social media monitoring companies collect data, and yesterday became the first company authorized to resell Twitter data, has raised $2 million in funding.

In a bit of coincidental timing, said Gnip CEO Jud Valeski, the filing for the round was posted yesterday on the SEC site (which is where I found it). He confirmed the round amount as $2 million, coming mostly from previous investor Foundry Group and including First Round Capital again. This brings the company to $6.6 million raised so far.

Gnip’s deal with Twitter finally brings pricing clarity to usage of Twitter’s data streams, at least for analytics and monitoring companies. The company has permission to collect significant revenue on the streams. Previously, Twitter’s only paid data option was the Firehose full stream of all user status messages, for which it charged different amounts depending on the size of the customer and what it was doing with the data. While Microsoft paid $10 million to incorporate the Firehose into its real-time search, some start-ups that create Twitter clients were getting the Firehose for free.

As I reported yesterday, Gnip will offer social media monitoring companies the Halfhose (50 percent of Tweets at a cost of $30,000 per month), the Decahose (10 percent of Tweets for $5,000 per month) and the Mentionhose (all mentions of a user including @replies and re-Tweets for $20,000 per month), with the caveat that they can’t publicly display the data.

Boulder, Colo.-based Gnip has gone through a big turnaround in the last year. In September ’09, it laid off seven of its 12-person staff, saying the huge increase in creation of social media data had overwhelmed the company’s self-built database and it needed to start over. In May of this year CEO Eric Marcoullier left the company, leaving it in the hands of his co-founder Valeski. Marcoullier, who had previously founded IGN and MyBlogLog, is now working on another start-up, the “Foursquare for Web sites” OneTrueFan.

But a deal with Twitter–a company that has historically expanded into its developers’ territory much to their dismay, rather than blessing third-party companies with partnerships–is a firm indication that Gnip is back on track.

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— Gitesh Pandya of comments on the dreadful opening weekend box office numbers for “The Fifth Estate.”