Apr 23, 2019

Twitter's green shoots

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey. Photo: David Becker/Getty Images

No matter how much you've read about Twitter’s troubles, the platform is enjoying a burst of encouraging signs.

Driving the news: Twitter's Q1 numbers came in high today: 330 million monthly active users, 134 million visiting every day, and $787 million in revenue, beating analyst expectations.

Why it matters: When news happens, and when there's a major cultural event, Twitter is the second screen.

  • Twitter is building its key measurement around those spikes, focusing on daily active users, instead of monthly, and they're growing on that metric, particularly internationally.
  • But Twitter keeps getting criticized for brand safety during those spikes: Women and people of color face repeated harassment, fake news proliferates and the platform struggles to control propaganda and violence.

The big picture: Snapchat has more daily active users (186M). So does Instagram (500M for stories alone). And Facebook itself has 1.5 billion, The Verge notes.

  • That scale matters, especially for advertising.
  • It also matters for the future of Twitter. On the internet, at least, once you stop growing, you start shrinking.

Between the lines: "Twitter, which has a history of being slow to make changes to its service, has recently increased the pace of new product introductions," Bloomberg reports.

  • "Last month it opened access to its prototype app, called twttr, to test new ideas and get feedback."
  • "The company is also rolling out a Snapchat-like camera feature that lets users post videos or photos in a swipe."

P.S. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and President Trump met behind closed doors at the White House today, Motherboard first reported and a Twitter spokesperson confirmed.

"Jack had a constructive meeting with (POTUS) today at the president’s invitation. They discussed Twitter’s commitment to protecting the health of the public conversation ahead of the 2020 U.S. elections and efforts underway to respond to the opioid crisis."
— Twitter spokesperson

Go deeper

Nikki Haley poaches top conservative from Heritage Action

Photo: John Lamparski/Getty Images

Nikki Haley has hired Tim Chapman, the head of Heritage Action, to run her conservative policy group Stand For America, according to two sources with direct knowledge of the hire. Haley and Chapman confirmed the hire, which was first reported by RealClearPolitics' Philip Wegmann.

Why it matters: Chapman is among the most influential conservative policy leaders in the country. His hire is Haley's highest-profile outside recruitment since leaving her job as UN ambassador under President Trump.

Situational awareness

Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Catch up on today's biggest news:

  1. Warren supporters form super PAC
  2. We may be on "the brink" of coronavirus pandemic
  3. Pentagon policy chief resigns
  4. National polls show Bernie in control ahead of Nevada
  5. How a Chinese think tank rates all 50 U.S. governors
  6. Sanders and Bloomberg battle over heart health

Trump has declared war on sanctuary cities

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Armed with subpoenas, lawsuits and immigration SWAT teams, the Trump administration has declared war on sanctuary cities.

The big picture: President Trump and his administration have used every available tool to try to crack down on local governments that refuse to hold immigrants in criminal custody, block immigration agents from working in county jails or deny federal authorities access to immigrants' records.