Twitter bans third-party ads to highlight Promoted Tweets

Posted by Emma Woollacott

Twitter is banning third-party ads, saying it's all about preserving the site's integrity. So not about the money at all.

In fact, says Twitter, it's a noble gesture that will mean a monetary sacrifice for the company.

"As our primary concern is the long-term health and value of the network, we have and will continue to forgo near-term revenue opportunities in the service of carefully metering the impact of Promoted Tweets on the user experience," says COO Dick Costolo.

"Third party ad networks are not necessarily looking to preserve the unique user experience Twitter has created."

But rest assured, Twitter isn't likely to lose out financially on this. The move just makes more space for its own Promoted Tweets. Launched just over a month ago, Promoted Tweets show ads from companies including Best Buy, Sony Pictures and Starbucks.

"We understand that for a few... companies, the new Terms of Service prohibit activities in which they’ve invested time and money," says Costolo sympathetically.

But he promises that with an Annotations capability coming soon, there'll be plenty of new business opportunities to make up for it.

"We know that companies and entrepreneurs will create things with Annotations that we couldn’t have imagined," he says.

"Companies will emerge that provide all manner of rich data and meta-data services around and in Tweets. Twitter clients could begin to differentiate on their ability to service different data-rich verticals like Finance or Entertainment. Media companies in the ecosystem can begin to incorporate rich tagging capabilities."