Tuesday, 21 November, 2017

Twitter Admits to Overstating User Growth Figures

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.   Kimberly White  Getty Images for Vanity Fair Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey. Kimberly White Getty Images for Vanity Fair
Heather Davidson | 28 October, 2017, 01:11

For Q3, Twitter had an average monthly active user base of 330 million for the quarter, up 4% year-over-year and an increase of 4 million from the prior quarter.

Twitter stockholders earned 10 cents per share in the third quarter, double the expected amount. Worryingly for the company, its USA advertising revenues fell 11% compared to the same period previous year, although this was more than offset by booming worldwide advertising advertising revenues, which grew by 6%.

The social media giant released its third quarter earnings report today, and there were several bright spots.

Twitter said that it had discovered monthly user numbers had wrongly included numbers from third-party applications that used a software-development program Digits.

Twitter says it now has 330M monthly active users, with a combination of email and push notifications driving traffic to the platform.

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The social networking site's losses also significantly decreased-Twitter faced a $21 million shortfall this quarter, down from $103 million in the same period a year ago.

Twitter has stepped up efforts to boost its user base and engagement, notably with video partnerships, as part of its turnaround efforts.

Another reason Wall Street is happy?

"This quarter we made progress in three key areas of our business: we grew our audience and engagement, made progress on a return to revenue growth, and achieved record profitability", Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said in the October 26 press release.

On the financial side, Twitter saw its overall quarterly revenue fall to $590 million, with advertisers reducing their spending on the platform. As a result, it lowered previously reported user numbers by 1 million for the fourth quarter of 2016 and by 2 million for the first two quarters of 2017. That will see the burgeoning company report a positive income for the first time, and may prove to investors and the wider world that Jack Dorsey's plan to revive Twitter is worth persisting with. The site also prohibited photos of non-consensual nudity, and said it would take a harder line on hate symbols and organizations that promote violence.

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