Twitter seems determined to leave his chronological display, the benefit of an algorithm selecting the messages displayed and determining their order. Anthony Noto, Chief Financial Officer, has again opened the door Wednesday, September 3, this radical change feared by some users of the microblogging network. Speaking at a conference in New York, he referred to an "algorithm that can deliver the breadth and depth of content on a specific topic that can get people interested."
This is not the first time Twitter talking about this change. In February, Dick Costolo, its chief executive, had already mentioned this hypothesis. But it seems that it does not really more than a matter of time now. The order "is not the most relevant experience for our users," says Mr. Noto, much like the verdict of discussions internally, when his superior was less categorical, using the conditional. And promised "we will act methodically testing to understand what are the implications."
GETTING CLOSER TO FACEBOOK
The introduction of this algorithm would be a step in the will Twitter be like always more to Facebook. In early April, the network had changed the appearance of the profile of its users. As the rival platform, these profiles now include a profile picture on the left, along with an excellent cover photo and information located in the left column. Another approach: the new design also gives pride to photos and videos, which are now displayed directly in the list of tweets.
Twitter has also modified the items that appear on the "timeline." Most recently, he has begun to show some tweets added to favorites by users that follow people. A bit like Facebook, which displays messages, photos or links that friends have liked a member. Previously, the conversations were also revised, with the integration of previous tweets in the stream. This is also what Facebook going back to old messages again commented by a friend. And it's perhaps not all: Twitter is also testing the replacement of "retweets" by "sharing", a term more mainstream, especially as popularized by ... Facebook.
EASIER TO UNDERSTAND
These potential changes should meet the priority goal has set Twitter: "make it easier to understand for newcomers platform," as explained by Mr. Costolo in February in conjunction financial results. On several occasions he had thus repeated the words "simple" and "accessible", a way to recognize that many new users get discouraged quickly. It is indeed one of the major problems in the network. The platform is too complicated, it obeys its own rules which can be complicated to understand quickly.
A very high number of voters to be active and stop after a few months - a figure that the company is careful to communicate. Getting closer to Facebook is also getting closer to standards that Internet users are now appropriate. Twitter hopes to retain the curious who come to his site. And thus boost growth. Especially since the right numbers for the second quarter may be qualified by the amount of activity related to the World Cup football. Prior to this, changes in the number of users and their commitment followed a worrying trajectory.
NEW SOURCE OF INCOME
Twitter executives still do not recognize but opt for an algorithm could also provide a new source of revenue. If all tweets no longer appear automatically among its followers, brand may be tempted to opt for sponsored messages, and thus pay for reaching a wider audience. For example, users who follow it. In other words, it must now pay what was hitherto free! Sponsored tweets already exist but most allow for the time to target people who do not follow the advertiser.
This new approach would be the same as on Facebook. The social network filter indeed quite strongly that it appears on the news feed of its members. For brands, this means that every message that post is only seen by a fraction of the people who love them. This rate is low, around 5-6%, much less for pages with a lot of "like". And continues to decline. Instead, Facebook invites brands to opt for sponsored messages. Twitter could also benefit from such a change, even though the company has yet to convince investors of its advertising potential.