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Are we witnessing the end of Twitter?

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With user numbers stagnating and revenue missing targets, is this the end of micro-blogging?

I’m thinking of joining Twitter. Good idea? 

You’re a bit behind the times there, mate. Maybe five years ago. The truth is, it’s a form of social media that looks to be in decline.

No way. I thought it was the hottest thing out there. Obama uses it. And the Kardashians. All of them. 

Well, you say that, but Twitter had 320 million users in December 2015, the same as three months earlier. In other words, nobody new is signing up.

But 320 million? That’s still huge. The share price must be great?

No, it’s down 62 percent in the last 12 months. And down over 30 percent just this year alone.

How does that compare to Facebook shares?

Facebook shares are up 38 percent in the last year.

So what’s gone wrong? 

Four years ago, it was the hottest form of new media. But many things happened. Lots of people feel they are being bullied and abused through twitter. Also, a lot of the 320 million users have just ten followers. Most of all, it seems to have lost its prestige. It may have a lot of signed-up users, but how many of them are tweeting something useful or just repeating the latest football scores? Quite a few.

Surely, though, Twitter has a long future? It’s the first draft of the news and all that…

Depends who you ask. Last month many users started the hashtag #RIPtwitter.

Why? 

Because word is Twitter will change the way it displays posts, so it will choose the ones it thinks you want to read, rather than display the most recent one.

A lot of people still tweet, though. And I thought celebs loved it?

Yeah, it probably does still have a future for celebs to put out PR-style communications and promos direct to a huge fanbase.

Anything else?

It’s great for the coverage of live events. Huge political debates, protests, extreme weather… anything that requires real-time updates, basically.

So it’s not actually going to fold, though, surely?

No. Not soon. It is valued at around US$12 billion on the stock market. But then again, Facebook is worth US$304 billion.

Should I buy shares in Twitter? 

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