Twitter has suffered a massive loss in its first published financial results since the social networks highly anticipated US stock market debut last year, and though the company might not have been surprised, punters took a different view, with shares dropping almost 25 percent in value.
Twitter told shareholders it lost $US511 million/$AU573 million in the last three months of last year, that’s despite a doubling of revenue from 12 months ago to a better-than-expected $US243 million/$AU273 Million.
Financials aren’t the only woes the micro-blog are suffering, Twitter seems to be testing a new heavier design and it’s users haven’t been receptive of the changes. The new layout is reported to include a look described by many as a cross between Facebook and Google plus. Format changes in the past – including their most recent small change – have upset a bunch of users ::::
Last night, Mashable assistant features editor Matt Petronzio – who first spotted the major update to his Twitter profile page – noticed that the layout changed back to a single vertical stream. Previously in the test, various-sized cards showed up scattered across the page. But as of this morning, they are back to the way they are pictured in the screenshots above and below.
In announcing it’s less than illustrious results, Twitter talked about “improving it’s user interface” to generate revenue growth, the company also conceded it might never have the reach of Facebook.
Billions of dollars were wiped from Twitter’s value last week, its shares slumped 24 per cent on its latest quarterly results, the company reported a $US511 million quarterly loss. Roger Cheng, the executive editor of online technology magazine C-Net says that investors look for early stage social media companies to be growing users strongly as a platform for future profits.
“It wasn’t a huge surprise actually that the company posted a loss. That was expected for an early company like this,” Mr Cheng said. “What people are really focussing on was the slowing active monthly user, which is their metric for the number of people that are actively using Twitter. It grew, but it only grew slightly, and slower than the quarter before that and the quarter before that. So there’s a disturbing trend where the growth in new users is starting to slow and questions are beginning to pop up that Twitter may be peaking.”
Mr Cheng says it seems very premature for Twitter to be approaching its peak usage.
“Twitter at this early stage of the game is already starting to show a little bit of a slowdown,” he said. “It just had its IPO in November it really should be a company that’s seeing a majority of the growth ahead of it, not behind it.”
The company talked in its results about improving its user interface and other ways to generate user and revenue growth, but Mr Cheng says a question mark remains as to whether Twitter will ever have a similar reach to other social media networks, such as Facebook.
“There’s still a lot of questions about whether Twitter is a phenomenon, whether it’s actually a mainstream thing or if it’s just a few million, hundred million active users there that aren’t part of the mainstream,” Mr Cheng concluded.
Twitter’s chief financial officer Mike Gupta says more than 90 per cent of its revenue comes from advertisers and that is set to grow strongly.
“Advertisers are increasingly recognising that conversations on Twitter provide a valuable opportunity to connect with consumers on Twitter in real time and in Q4 [the fourth quarter] we saw a record number of retailers flock to Twitter to do just that,” he said.
Twitter declined to comment on the redesign, however, in a blog post last September, the company wrote that it is “constantly testing changes” to its site on select groups of users.
“We are constantly evolving the product,” Twitter’s VP for engineering said. “Some changes are visible, they may help you protect your Twitter account or make it easier to share photos, others are under-the-hood changes that help us suggest relevant content in real time and make Twitter more engaging.”
In January the micro-blog announced changes to mobile photo sharing, “It’s now easier to find out about events and trends people are talking about on Twitter as they’re happening.”
The improved photo editing, sharing and trending recommendations were the first clue to larger changes to come.
REBLOG! Last Year on Twitter
What happened in the world, happened simultaneously on Twitter, we’ve seen that people use Twitter to add an extra and distinctive element to global news stories. The Boston Police Department used Twitter to spread the word about the manhunt for the Boston Marathon bombers.
When the President of Panama found weapons materials in the Panama Canal, he tweeted the news to the world. When a nuclear agreement was brokered with Iran, world leaders shared their reactions on Twitter :: Read the full Twitter post »»»»
RELATED! The Twitter Bomb
A UK man who joked on Twitter that he would BLOW UP an airport after it closed because of snow has had his conviction for sending a “menacing” message overturned in a landmark ruling for users of social media websites.
Paul Chambers, 28, had sent the message in what he called a moment of frustration at not being able to catch a flight from Doncaster Robin Hood airport. Mr Chambers had later been arrested and sentenced but the High Court on Friday upheld his appeal against conviction.
Speaking outside the court afterwards, Mr Chambers’ barrister John Cooper, who had argued it was wrong to associate the tweet with terrorism, said it was a milestone ruling.
In Friday’s High Court ruling, three judges headed by the Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge, allowed Mr Chambers’ appeal against a Crown Court judge’s decision upholding the 2010 conviction.
They said: “If the person or persons who receive or read it, (the message) or may reasonably be expected to receive, or read it, would brush it aside as a silly joke, or a joke in bad taste, or empty bombastic or ridiculous banter, then it would be a contradiction in terms to describe it as a message of a menacing character.” :: Read the full article »»»»
RELATED! Twitter Starts Censoring Content
The site said even with the possibility of such restrictions, Twitter would not be able to coexist with some countries.
“As we continue to grow internationally, we will enter countries that have different ideas about the contours of freedom of expression,” Twitter wrote in a blog post. ”Some differ so much from our ideas that we will not be able to exist there,” it said.
Twitter gave as examples of restrictions it might cooperate with “certain types of content, such as France or Germany, which ban pro-Nazi content”.
A Twitter spokesperson declined to elaborate on the blog. ”Starting today, we give ourselves the ability to reactively withhold content from users in a specific country while keeping it available in the rest of the world,” the Twitter blog said.
Twitter’s decision to begin censoring content represents a significant departure from its policy of just one year ago, when anti-government protesters in Tunisia, Egypt and other Arab countries coordinated mass demonstrations through the microblog and, in turn, thrust Twitter’s disruptive potential into the global spotlight.
As the revolutions brewed last January, Twitter signalled it would take a hands-off approach to censoring content in a blog post entitled The Tweets Must Flow :: Read the full article »»»»