Jack Dorsey said Twitter is in the 'very, very early phases' of exploring a subscription model and other additional streams of revenue

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Jack Dorsey said Twitter is in the 'very, very early phases' of exploring a subscription model and other additional streams of revenue
Jack Dorsey, Twitter CEO, and Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO, off camera, testify during a Senate (Select) Intelligence Committee hearing in Dirksen Building where they testified on the influence of foreign operations on social media on September 5, 2018Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call
  • Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said the company is indeed in the early stages of exploring a subscription model for the social media site, per a CNN report.
  • Unconfirmed reports of a subscription model for Twitter began circulating in early July.
  • The confirmation comes as Twitter reports a 23% drop in ad revenue in its Q2 earnings, as the pandemic deals a blow to advertising sales across the board.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey confirmed the social media platform is exploring a subscription model in a call with analysts Thursday, according to CNN.

Per the report, Dorsey said the bar is "really high" for asking Twitter users to pay for using the service. But he said the San Francisco-based company is indeed in the "very, very early phases of exploring" more ways to profit from the platform. Reports had previously surfaced about a rumored subscription model for the site in early July.

A Twitter spokesperson declined Business Insider's request for comment and instead pointed to the company's Q2 letter to shareholders. On page 7 of the letter, it states:

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"We are also in the early stages of exploring additional potential revenue product opportunities to complement our advertising business. These may include subscriptions and other approaches, and although our exploration is very early and we do not expect any revenue attributable to these opportunities in 2020, you may see tests or hear us talk more about them as our work progresses."

The news comes as ad revenue plummets amid the pandemic and as companies scramble for additional streams of revenue as a solution. Twitter's advertising sales have dropped 23% during the global health crisis, according to the company's Q2 earnings report.

Twitter CEO Dorsey also continues to grapple with the mess left by a massive hack that took over the website last Wednesday. More than 100 verified Twitter accounts, such as those of Elon Musk and Barack Obama, were hacked in a bitcoin scam.

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Because of the hack and the security risks it exposed, Dorsey and Twitter may also be dragged into the spotlight of the upcoming antitrust hearing in which the CEOs of Apple, Google, Facebook, and Amazon will testify before Congress.

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