Twitter chief Elon Musk is reportedly considering putting Twitter behind a paywall in an effort to monetise the site as the billionaire entrepreneur claimed the platform has actually gained users since he took over the reins last week. The development comes amid several ongoing changes introduced by the new owner, including mass layoffs across the globe. The company is also trying to lure back employees, while some workers noted that the economics behind its soon-to-relaunch Twitter Blue subscription may cause the company to lose money.
Musk’s first ‘signature’ project, the rollout of a new version of the Twitter Blue subscription allowing users to get a verification badge for $7.99 per month (or losing the same if deciding not to pay) has already met with a few challenges. The existing version had just a little more than 100,000 active subscribers, according to a report by Platformer. The new version, which will be 37.5 per cent costlier, has raised concerns among regular users of the platform. It’s still not clear how the company will persuade enough people to subscribe to justify the initiative, the report added.
Musk has reportedly discussed the idea with podcast and adviser David Sacks. The plan might allow everyone to use Twitter for a brief time each month but require a subscription to continue browsing, the report added, citing sources.
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However, the report also noted that the implementation does not seem imminent as the Twitter Blue team is wholly occupied with the launch of the expanded verification.
Earlier, the news of the social microblogging site pushing ahead with plans to charge for content, including videos, on the social media site was reported by the Washington Post. The report had mentioned earlier this month that the company is working on a feature that would let people post videos and charge users to view them, with the company taking a cut of the proceeds, the report stated citing an internal email. It had said the company may look to rush out the feature, referred to as ‘Paywalled Video’.
Users will be able to enable the ‘Paywalled Video’ feature after adding video content to a tweet. They will be able to choose from preset prices, such as $1, $2, $5, or $10, the report added. Other Twitter users would be able to like or retweet the content regardless of whether they’ve paid to view it, the report mentioned.