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Reporters' Roundtable: Twitter's business model (podcast)

Twitter finally has a business model: selling search ads. Yes, after all this waiting, Twitter is pulling a Google. To discuss the long-awaited monetization scheme, Rafe Needleman is joined by CNET's Caroline McCarthy, and The New York Times' Claire Cain Miller.

Today: Twitter's business model. Yes, there is one. Finally. To talk about what Twitter is going to do--and if they really need to do it--we have two great guests with us here in the studio. First, from CNET, author of our social-networking blog The Social, Caroline McCarthy (@caro on Twitter). And from The New York Times, that paper's Twitter expert, Claire Cain Miller (@clariecm).

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Show notes and talking points

Caroline McCarthy: Twitter COO details new business model
Claire Cain Miller: Twitter unveils plans to draw money from ads
Rafe Needleman: Twitter still has no business model, and that's OK (from 2009)


In a nutshell, what is the model?

Why'd it take so long?

Search-based, right?

What is "resonance?"

What about the idea of "pro" accounts with analytics?

Not location-based?

Reaction from advertisers? Early adopters?

What about regular non-search use, or client apps?

Similar models (Digg? Techmeme?)

What took so long?

A little about Twitter: how many people does it have, what's its burn rate? Funding?

Does it need a biz model?

What's next?

What about Facebook, Google, and Microsoft as competitors?

Is Twitter killing its developer base (by announcing its own shortener, buying Twitter app companies, etc.)?

Is there an end-game for Twitter? Is it a business, or an acquisition target?

Next time: Facebook and privacy, with guests Declan McCullagh of CNET, and Kara Swisher of AllThingsD. E-mail comments to, and get all the show notes as well as replays and downloads of the podcast on the blog. Watch my Twitter feed (@Rafe) for updates.