Having recently posted an article about how to make money with Twitter via SponsoredTweets, Arafat Piyada called my attention about the recent move done by Twitter which is banning all third party ad platforms injecting in-stream advertising. Now, for those of you who have not yet heard about this, here is an excerpt of the announcement:
As our primary concern is the long-term health and value of the network, we have and will continue to forgo near-term revenue opportunities in the service of carefully metering the impact of Promoted Tweets on the user experience. It is critical that the core experience of real-time introductions and information is protected for the user and with an eye toward long-term success for all advertisers, users and the Twitter ecosystem. For this reason, aside from Promoted Tweets, we will not allow any third party to inject paid tweets into a timeline on any service that leverages the Twitter API. We are updating our Terms of Service to articulate clearly what we mean by this statement, and we encourage you to read the updated API Terms of Service to be released shortly (*).
Why are we prohibiting these kinds of ads? First, third party ad networks are not necessarily looking to preserve the unique user experience Twitter has created. They may optimize for either market share or short-term revenue at the expense of the long-term health of the Twitter platform. For example, a third party ad network may seek to maximize ad impressions and click through rates even if it leads to a net decrease in Twitter use due to user dissatisfaction.
(*) And here is an excerpt of the updated Twitter API Terms of Service:
It is our goal to provide you, our ecosystem partner, with a policy that is clear and transparent about what you can do to monetize your Service.
1. Twitter Ads. Twitter reserves the right to serve advertising via its APIs (“Twitter Ads”). If you decide to serve Twitter Ads once we start delivering them, we will share a portion of advertising revenue with you per our then-current terms and conditions.
2. Advertising Around Twitter Content
(a) We encourage you to create advertising opportunities around Twitter content that are compliant with these Rules. In cases where Twitter content is the primary basis of the advertising sale, we require you to compensate us (recoupable against any fees payable to Twitter for data licensing). For example, you may sell sponsorships or branding around gadgets or iframes that include Tweets and other customized visualizations of Twitter. Please contact us for questions and information at firstname.lastname@example.org, or to notify us of an advertising opportunity.
(b) You may generally advertise around and on applications or sites that display Tweets, but you may not place any advertisements within the Twitter timeline on your Service other than Twitter Ads.
(c) Your advertisements cannot resemble or reasonably be confused by users as a Tweet.
(d) You may advertise in close proximity to the Twitter timeline (e.g., banner ads above or below timeline), but there must be a clear separation between Twitter content and your advertisements.
3. Using Twitter Content. You must get permission from the user that created the Tweet if You:
(a) want to use their Tweet on a commercial durable good or product (for example, using a Tweet on a t-shirt or a poster or making a book based on someone’s Tweets); or
(b) create an advertisement that implies the sponsorship or endorsement on behalf of the user.
The purpose of this post is not specifically for me to provide an opinion, but rather, request your opinion about the following?
(1) What do you think about this move from Twitter?
(2) Do you see any gray area within the updated API TOS?
(3) The term above, “aside from promoted Tweets“, do you think that SponsoredTweets is included in this ban, or does it apply only to sites such as ad.ly or tweetup.com?
Please share your thoughts and opinions with us by leaving your comment below.