As Breitbart News has warned would happen after Obama bundler Chris Sacca led a Board of Directors coup last June to oust popular CEO Dick Costolo and muzzle conservative free speech, Twitter announced that their core users declined in late 2015.
As Twitter fessed up in their fourth quarter 2015 earnings report, the company did not add any new users from October through December 2015. Twitter may boast they have 320 million total users, but their core users, excluding people who receive tweets via text message, actually declined over the quarter to 305 million from 307 million.
With analysts predicting a 3 million core user gain, the stock tanked by 13 percent in after-hours trading to a new low of $13.31, down 64 percent since announcing Costolo was leaving. Although the company did earn $710 million in revenue for the fourth quarter, they expect that number to fall back to between $595 million and $610 million in the first three months of 2016.
Costolo’s “Abusive Behavior Policy” was the fairness-in-social-media gold standard, by allowing users to post content, including potentially inflammatory content, in chronological timelines as long as they did not violate the unbiased Twitter Rules and Terms of Service.
Despite being headquartered in the People’s Republic of San Francisco, Costolo had won praise for user growth and not knuckling under to leftist thought police. The ability to capture a wide spectrum of users was credited with making Twitter the #3 most popular social media company with revenue growth at a 74 percent rate in early 2015.
Doubling down on corporate bias against conservatives and libertarians, the company on February 9 announced their own version of George Orwell’s Ministry of Truth with the formation of the Twitter Trust & Safety Council, “to strike the right balance between fighting abuse and speaking truth to power.”
In making sure the Council reflected the values of Social Justice Warriors that now dominate Silicon Valley, Twitter appointed 40 “grassroots advocacy organizations” and “experts from 13 regions” to fight micro-aggressions on the web. The list of thought police organizations includes such leftists’ icons as Beyond Blue, Feminist Frequency, and GLAAD. These groups are dedicated to constraining and retaliating against conservative’s free speech.
Twitter also unveiled a new “timeline” that will surface tweets that Twitter and its thought police recommend, rather than the straight-forward chronological timeline. An earlier leak of the new policy by BuzzFeed caused a Twitter revolt under the hastag #RIPTwitter, as many active users fear censorship and more spam.
The company says the new “algorithmic timeline” is supposed to make users’ feeds more interesting. Besides being a leftist nanny, the algorithmic timeline is meant to encourage users to digest more ads. This may help a short-term revenue spike during the current election campaigns, but it will anger their social media user base and cause lots of people to tweet out.
Twitters’ doubling down on what isn’t working is why the company has become so irrelevant compared to Facebook as a business-to-customer portal for users and a business emporium to those businesses seeking direct engagement of potential customers.
The early Facebook website was built to connect with your college friends. Eventually, this went global and gave Facebook a spectacular database of very specific and actionable information, which opened the door for businesses to use highly “targeted” advertising.
Facebook has spread free speech by acquiring diverse channels that include Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp. Together, this network is still growing fast and has 1.6 billion Facebook monthly active users (MAUs), 1 billion WhatsApp MAUs, 800,000 Messenger MAUs, and 400,000 Instagram MAUs. Together that equals 4 billion.
Twitter, by comparison, only has 305 million MAUs, and they are working hard to drive the number down with changes in the timeline and the nanny Twitter Trust & Safety Council.