Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Twitter Really, Really Likes TV

Hey! It was Twitter’s fifth birthday yesterday! I remember hearing about that somewhere.

Ah–here’s one of the places I heard about it: Conan O’Brien’s newish show, where co-founder Biz Stone popped in for a chat. (O’Brien, you may have heard, is really into Twitter these days.)

Stone, who is on TV a lot, is good at it, too.

Stone’s appearances are fun, but Twitter’s real embrace of TV is happening a little bit offstage, where the company is working hard to get itself integrated into TV shows.

It’s still unclear exactly what TV can really mean for Twitter, but the company is smart to try to get itself into the industry, whose $70 billion-plus in annual revenue still makes the Web ad business look puny.

Twitter’s media blog, for instance, is touting Comedy Central’s use/promotion of the service during its kinda-unwatchable Donald Trump roast.

Comedy Central ran a Twitter hashtag on the bottom left corner for the duration of the show, prompting people to use it, which helped make the term appear on Twitter’s “trending” list, which presumably prompted more people to check out the show.

That’s a cool virtuous cycle, though I wonder if that’s a novelty that goes away. More important: Even if that strategy works long-term, how does Twitter turn Comedy Central’s use into revenue?

Still, if the Twitter team can convince the networks–and their advertisers–that Twitter helps bring more eyeballs to shows, and/or helps keep them there, then that’s going to be worth a lot, to someone. Twitter just has to figure out how to get a slice of that.


Latest Video

View all videos »

Search »

When AllThingsD began, we told readers we were aiming to present a fusion of new-media timeliness and energy with old-media standards for quality and ethics. And we hope you agree that we’ve done that.

— Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg, in their farewell D post