Overnight the news has come out that Twitter will be launching its revenue model and its plan to make money today. The long and short of it is that businesses will be able to advertise on Twitter, which has been free to use and advert-free for over four years now. The adverts will appear *in users' conversation streams*.
This has serious implications for the community that has grown around Twitter: Will the invasion of adverts inside conversations turn people off (and on to the next thing)? This is the opposite of how Google and Facebook work.
Will the comms people who have been networking to build ways of spreading news naturally on Twitter get the hump? Businesses' social media early-adopters have been inhabitants of Twitter since it was launched. They have built up networks that they can talk to which businesses have found just as useful as paying for an advert when it comes to getting a message out. Will the new Promoted Tweets function unravel this worth, or make it even more useful?
I think that it will be uncomfortable for many Twitter users to see ads popping up, and maybe it will pave the way for a paid-for ad-free Twitter account availability which will make Twitter even more money.
Tonight (UK time) Twitter will officially launch Promoted Tweets along with a host of other innovations. Stay tuned to the Twitter channel "@chirp" to see it first hand.