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Photo: Scroll

Twitter on Tuesday announced it's acquiring Scroll, the venture-backed news upstart from former Chartbeat CEO Tony Haile.

Why it matters: It's Twitter's second acquisition this year that's meant to help people read more long-form on the platform. In January, Twitter bought the newsletter publishing platform Revue.

Catch up quick: Scroll launched last year to help publishers make more money while also giving users who hate ads a better internet experience.

  • Users to pay a monthly fee for access to websites they already use but are scrubbed of all ads. With that user revenue, Scroll sends its partner-publishers more money per user than they would make per user while serving them ads.
  • Haile said in a statement that while Scroll's business model is working well, the company needs to move faster to innovate, hence the deal.

Details: In the short-term, Scroll will temporarily pause new customer sign-ups so that it can integrate its product into Twitter. The service will go into private beta while it integrates into Twitter's subscription offerings later this year.

  • In the long-term, Twitter says Scroll will become a meaningful addition to its subscriptions products. Twitter users that subscribe to Scroll will be able to read articles ad-free from hundreds publishers that work with Scroll, including The Atlantic, The Verge, USA Today, The Sacramento Bee and more.
  • Scroll will wind down Nuzzel, the news intelligence product it acquired in 2019, but in the future, elements of Nuzzel will be embedded directly into Twitter.
  • Financial deal terms were not announced, but presumably the deal is relatively small. Twitter will bring on the entire Scroll team, which is just 13 people.

The big picture: The deal speaks to Twitter's new focus on long-term content efforts, and its commitment to helping publishers succeed. Unlike some of its tech rivals, Twitter almost never gets into public spats with media companies over distribution terms.

  • "Analysts joke that Twitter suffers in comparison to other platforms because the value realized by third parties from Twitter is far greater than the value it is able to capture for itself," Haile said in a statement. "They see this as a weakness. It is a strength."

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Health

White House acknowledges U.S. will miss July 4 vaccination goal

Fireworks in New York City to celebrate the state reaching a 70% vaccination rate. Photo: Liao Pan/China News Service via Getty Images

The Biden administration acknowledged on Tuesday that it will likely miss its goal of vaccinating 70% of U.S. adults with at least one dose by July 4.

Why it matters: Despite falling short of the goal, the White House still believes most Americans will be safe to fully celebrate Independence Day, as COVID-19 cases and deaths remain at low levels throughout much of the country.

Exclusive: Quartz, NYT vets launch new media company about work

Photo credit: Emma Howells for Charter

Quartz co-founders Kevin Delaney and Jay Lauf, along with New York Times veteran Erin Grau, are launching a new media and services company called "Charter" that is centered around the future of work, the founders told Axios.

Why it matters: "There are other media companies that write about this topic — some occasionally and some more frequently, but it's one topic among many things that they do," Delaney said. "This is a driving focus for us."

Biden endorses bill to end sentencing disparity for crack and powder cocaine

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

The Biden administration endorsed a bill Tuesday that would end sentencing disparities for crack versus powder cocaine offenses.

The big picture: Supporting the legislation follows through on one of Biden's campaign promises. But it's a shift from decades ago, when Biden spearheaded efforts to pass the legislation that implemented the disparities in the first place.