Cable providers are dead; the same way RIM is dead. I think Twitter is positioned to be a driving force behind the content revolution in creation and consumption. Yes, Twitter insists it’s not a media company but they’re wrong. Twitter could be the procurer of big data for media creators whether it’s music, books or television. Hold your tongue before you start babbling about Facebook.
Dick Costello just gave a presentation about Twitter this week; I didn’t watch but I did read headlines. Let’s be honest, these things are really a PR move, they aren’t talking about what’s going on behind the scenes. Want another dose of honesty? Twitter is probably freaking out about their slice of social being eaten by big brothers Google and the soon-to-be-public Facebook. They aren’t going to shrivel into obscurity but living and dying on referral traffic wont get it done.
I love Twitter, I think it fits my personality better than the alternatives (still haven’t dived into the tumblr thing though). On the other hand, the rest of my family’s opinions range from unenthused to hatred. Their complaints fall into two categories, either they don’t feel involved in the conversation or they don’t feel like sharing with strangers (I’m not a fan of private users but that’s for a different time).
Let me espouse about where I think Twitter can develop a secondary presence and start becoming a big player. For beginners and REALLY passionate tweeters established topics would be very useful. By that I mean permanent hashtag groups, and more importantly an ability to follow these topics in your stream (maybe in a diffused fashion). Some of these groups would be paid for and managed by major media groups and others would be as decentralized as Occupy and Anonymous. This is great for both sides of the equation.
Take my family and their complaints. It increases involvement by allowing them to join a developed conversation on something they care about, whether it be cooking or Law and Order SVU. Also, while they would still be sharing with strangers these strangers would have at least some sort of overlapping interest. This second part is great for Twitter, an interweaving of users social webs, but that’s just an added bonus. By increasing the conversation rate Twitter can create an even greater stream of data.
Now nobody is going to argue Twitter has or gets as much data as Facebook or Google, but they do have a really fast and simple way of people sharing. That’s where they fit into the coming television revolution. Yes, Twitter on the TV, whether it is integrated into YouTube, Hulu plus, Netflix or your cable company (hopefully dead by now and not an option). Content creators suddenly have time contextual opinions and interaction.
My sister could share: “Lt Stabler is such a bad ass #SVU”. Now NBC can take that data and do an untold number of things with it, Twitter can include this tweet with others relating to the same episode (not just at the exact time she sent it) and her followers can get reference to the particular episode on Netflix.
The potential for better content, better recommendations, and better Twitter interaction from regular users is quite profound. Twitter doesn’t need their app to look like the web or mobile version, in fact with TVs and phones connecting already, they would simply have to pull info from the app (yes streaming cable can be viewed as an app) that’s currently running and tied to Twitter. Twitter connect anyone? Yeah they would love that.
That’s all off the cuff but if anyone knows somebody at Twitter and they want to hire me, let me know.