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Twitter acquires publishing platform Revue

The start-up will continue to remain as a standalone service within Twitter.

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New Delhi: Twitter has acquired newsletter publishing platform Revue for an undisclosed amount, as it looks to foray into long-form content and subscription-oriented products. 

Post the acquisition, Twitter will be making Revue's Pro features available for free to all accounts and will be lowering the cut it takes from paid newsletters to five per cent from the current six per cent fee.

"Revue will accelerate our work to help people stay informed about their interests while giving all types of writers a way to monetise their audience – whether it’s through the one they built at a publication, their website, on Twitter, or elsewhere," said Twitter product lead Kayvon Beykpour and VP of publisher products Mike Park in an official blog post.

Founded in 2015, Revue allowed writers and publishers to send free and paid newsletters along with other features like subscriber management, cross-publishing to other platforms, and engagement insights among others. Its customers include Chicago Sun Times, The Markup, and Vox Media.

The start-up will continue to remain as a standalone service within Twitter, with its team focused on improving the ways writers create their newsletters, build their audience and get paid for their work.

Going forward, Twitter plans to expand the team across areas like engineering, design, research and data science, who will build more "discovery, reading, and conversational experiences" centred around long-form content on the platform, Beykpour and Park said.

Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey had first stated plans to explore alternative revenue streams including a subscription model during the company's earnings conference call in July last year. This move came as the microblogging giant faced a sharp dip in its core advertising business during the pandemic-hit 2020.

"We're now at a place where we can explore other ideas and you will likely see some tests this year. We have a small team who is exploring our options," Dorsey had told analysts during the earnings conference call. "We have a really high bar for when we would ask consumers to pay for aspects of Twitter"

This deal comes as newsletter platforms like Substack have witnessed increased traction and attracted several high-profile writers and columnists, many of whom are now running their own subscription-based publications.

Other players in the space include TinyLetter, Ghost, and ScrollStack. Last week, Axios reported that Forbes is launching a newsletter platform that will allow journalists to launch their own paid newsletters and split the revenue with the publisher.

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