Selling Twitter makes business
sense for its promoters. The San Francisco based company was formed in March
2006 and went public in November 2013. But Twitter is yet to make profit.
According to a Reuters report, the total accumulated loss of the company since
its inception comes around $ 2.3 billion and Twitter has not showed any profit
since it went public.
But Twitter is just not any other
social media or information technology Company. It has become a powerhouse of
news, views and information. Any big news is usually broken on Twitter first,
be it Osama bin Laden’s death or Prince William’s engagement or many other such
developments. Even back home in India, the whole nation was waiting for Nawaz
Sharif’s UNGA diatribe and India’s first official response on it came through
Twitter only. Narendra Modi had announced his sudden Lahore stopover on Twitter
only. There are countless such examples – India or elsewhere.
The another aspect of Twitter
that is goldmine of news and views is that people, especially those who matter,
tell their anger, frustration, irritation, joy, happiness, sorrow and what not
through Twitter. Sometimes a controversial tweet becomes the biggest trending
news of the day. Sometimes a tweet becomes the most direct message to tell your
problems and grievances that potentially reach across the spectrum.
In that sense, Twitter has become
more like a mainstream media outfit – with the obvious benefits of social media
– there are no restrictions, no gatekeeping, no censorship – and these are
really free. Yes, there are exceptions and government poaching but then where
aren’t they? The good thing about Twitter is that it has fought such censorship
If we see Twitter sale in that
context – the natural question that comes to us is – “would Twitter remain the same,
old, free Twitter after it is sold to some big behemoth with multiple business
interests across the countries?”
Don’t we know how big businesses
lobby with governments and do compromises to keep their operations growing?