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New Twitter Product Means More Tweets in More Places

Curator will help publishers embed and share Twitter content outside of Twitter.

Saturday Night Live

Twitter has long argued that its user base is much bigger than its monthly active user total lets on. Now it has announced a product that should help support that claim.

Twitter on Tuesday launched Curator, a free tool specifically for publishers that will help them curate and embed Tweets and Vine videos onto other screens like TVs, websites and even stadium screens. Twitter also does this for mobile apps through its Fabric developer kit.

The product is intended to help publishers supplement their own content with what people are discussing on Twitter such as Tweets about a live basketball game that might appear on ESPN during the game or even on the big screen at the arena.

But Curator should also help Twitter expand its syndicated audience, or the group of users who see Twitter content but don’t necessarily have a Twitter account. This is the audience the company has been highlighting for Wall Street, claiming it’s a better representation of Twitter’s size than the 288 million MAUs it reports.

The argument is that you don’t need to be logged into Twitter to enjoy Twitter.

If you feel like you already see live tweet streams embedded on media properties or on the Jumbotron at the stadium, that’s probably because you do.

Twitter already partners with companies that do this, like Livefyre and Spredfast, so in theory it could offer some competition. But these partnerships won’t be affected by the new product, according to a blog post from Matt Dennebaum, the product manager for Curator, who added that Twitter is actually looking to expand this group of partners.

That doesn’t mean these two groups haven’t butted heads before. Last year, Twitter tried to force some of these partners to exclude posts from Facebook when curating social content for TV. Twitter ultimately backed off that stance when TV programmers complained.

Curator will only work with Twitter and Vine content to start, according to people familiar with the product. That means publishers who want to embed other social material from places like Facebook or Instagram will need to use different syndication partners.


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