Status Update: Today, Twitter Likes Advertising!

Published on May 20, 2009
by Peter Kafka


Why did Twitter co-founder Biz Stone just have to spend 228 words on a blog post, explaining that he and his company are not opposed to advertising?

Because, on Monday, Stone said this to a room full of Reuters reporters: “There are a few reasons why we’re not pursuing advertising–one is it’s just not quite as interesting to us.”

So, you can see where the confusion might have come up.

To his credit, Stone used his post to add some nuance, which is always a good thing. To wit: Twitter doesn’t plan on selling banner ads on the service, and presumably doesn’t plan on selling any ads, period.

But Twitter is happy to help marketers and advertisers who want to use the service to push product. And Stone left himself plenty of wiggle room with these lines: “Facilitating connections between businesses and individuals in meaningful and relevant ways is compelling. We’re going to leave the door open for exploration in this area.”

Stone also talked to Reuters about plans to roll out some kind of revenue-generating products–because, recall,¬†Twitter currently has next-to none–by the end of the year.

“It doesn’t have to be this super home run in terms of making billions of dollars….But it has to show a little bit of signs of life, telling folks, ‘Yes Twitter can be a sustainable business.'”

The Reuters team apparently didn’t press Stone about what exactly he had in mind, but I don’t think he and fellow co-founder Evan Williams will get a similar pass next Tuesday when they kick off the seventh edition of the D: All Things Digital conference and sit down for a Q&A with All Things Digital Co-Executive Editors Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg.

Far be it from me to suggest a question to Boss Swisher, but I can guess at a couple that might come up. For instance: “What amount of cash would an acquirer like Google (GOOG) or Microsoft (MSFT) have to pony up to get you guys to sell? And are there any companies out there you just won’t sell to?”

One question I can answer in advance: What’s the best way to track the D7 conference via Twitter?

Glad you asked!

You have several options: You can follow @allthingsd, our official conference account, as well as the accounts for Kara Swisher, Walt Mossberg, John Paczkowski, Katie Boehret, and me, Peter Kafka, all of whom will be tweeting as much as we can from D–when we’re not onstage interviewing or backstage blogging. And you can also search for D7-related Tweets using the #D7 tag.

Katie is already taking requests from Twitter followers about topics she should be tweeting about next week, so I’ll do the same. And if you don’t actually want to follow me on Twitter, you can reach me via plain old email: peter@allthingsd.com.

Corrections and Amplications

We updated the hashmark to use for following D7-related tweets from #d7conference to #D7. It’s more direct and leaves more room for the rest of your tweet!

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