On Tuesday, Twitter announced plans to launch an official advertising platform, according to Anamitra Banerji, head of Twitter product management at Interactive Advertising Bureau. Twitter is claiming to be “just as popular” as Facebook, with a tweet volume of over 600 Tweets every second.
Anamitra Banerji commented on Tuesday about the planned Twitter advertising platform:
“The platform is only in the test phase. It will be explicitly clear that a sponsor paid for the ad and it will be relevant and useful, so the user doesn’t think of it as an ad.”
Concern For Legitimacy
My only concern with Twitter, and it’s own views on tweet quality, is the volume of tweets that are generated automatically.
Take for example the popular service called Twitter Feed (twitterfeed.com).
Twitter Feed allows you to automatically generate tweets by simply adding an RSS feed to your account. Once you add your RSS feed, Twitter Feed will take the headline, and a shortened URL to the feed update, and then automatically post this feed to your Twitter account.
It’s a great service, but there’s only one problem – Twitter Feed currently has over 971,406 feeds under management. Now each feed can generate up to 5 updates per 30 minutes, or 5 updates (tweets) per hour.
Doing the math, and assuming each feed is running at maximum capacity, that would be almost 10 million tweets per hour!
Now, of course not all of the feeds in Twitter Feed are running at max capacity. And as someone who’s used Twitter Feed before, I know that a lot of feeds are inactive and not producing tweets.
However, the point is this – Twitter is claiming 600 tweets per second. But I question how many of those tweets are coming from legitimate Twitter users. There are a lot of Twitter services out there just like Twitter Feed. And with so much “automation” happening, what percentage of tweets are actually coming from legitimate people?
If the majority of tweets are automated, then an advertising platform on Twitter seems a bit useless because who would you actually be reaching? And how could you tell what tweets have an actual person behind them?