Twitter just fired four top executives and plans to continue its corporate shakeups even more in the coming weeks, but will the changes make the social media platform relevant once again?
The social media giant faces a cynical Wall Street whose investors are skeptical about the company’s future along with users who are fleeing to other social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and WhatsApp.
Twitter CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey took over the company again last year amidst falling stock prices in an attempt to revitalize the social media giant and increase the number of users on its site. He began with a round of firings designed to streamline the company.
The shakeup continued this weekend as Dorsey formally announced the departure of four top executives with a tweet Sunday night, according to the USA Today.
“I’m personally grateful to each of them for everything they’ve contributed to Twitter.”
Was really hoping to talk to Twitter employees about this later this week, but want to set the record straight now: pic.twitter.com/PcpRyTzOlW
— Jack (@jack) January 25, 2016
Among the departing executives are Alex Roetter, head of engineering; Kevin Weil, head of product; Katie Jacobs, vice president of global media; and Brian “Skip” Schipper, vice president of human resources.
The general manager for Vine, Twitter’s mini-video service, is also leaving the social media platform to join Google. Jason Toff told The Verge he was excited to begin work on virtual reality applications.
Meanwhile, the Chinese social network Sina Weibo beat Twitter to the punch last week when it announced it would be expanding its 140 character limit to 2,000 characters over the next couple months, according to The Verge.
The 140 character limit imposed on Twitter users was originally implemented because the site was designed so that tweets could be made via text. It’s the users of Twitter that famously came up with the idea for the #hashtag, @reply and the RT (retweet).
— Fast Company (@FastCompany) January 25, 2016
The insider culture, however, has failed to grow as expected and attract a more mainstream audience.
Despite the plummeting stock prices and corporate shakeup, Twitter still has the ability to continue operating far into the future as Matt Krantz points out in his USA Today article.
The social media platform has some $3.5 billion in cash, which will allow it to continue operating with current expenses of $8.5 million a year for the next 412 years, according to Krantz.
Investors can only hope it won’t take that long to fix Twitter and make the social media giant relevant again.
Dorsey has already made changes at the company in the hopes of revitalizing the ailing social media giant including the addition of Moments and the possible character limit expansion.
— Jim Roberts (@nycjim) January 25, 2016
The changes, however, have so far failed to attract the expected number of users.
The answer may come in the form of the increased character limit Twitter has been considering for some time now.
The larger limit would allow the company to compete with Facebook and Google for advertising dollars and launch the social media platform in a new direction.
Twitter’s fast-paced posting environment makes it easy for core users to get brief updates, but rather difficult for advertisers to reach their audience, as Matthew Ingram points out in his Fortune article.
“What Twitter needs is new users, and lots of them, and it needs them to spend longer on the network, interacting with tweets and (hopefully) Twitter ads.”
[Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images]