December 17, 2008
A year and a half ago, just before SXSW, Matt Mullenweg told me that Twitter was going to be the hot new thing at the Conference, and urged me to check it out. So I did. I tried it for a couple days. Nobody else I knew or cared about seemed to be using it. So I declared it an example of digiterati navel gazing, and gave it up.
I began tweeting again about a week ago. It is a different story this time around. While I am thoroughly tired of Jason Calacanis’s hourly updates on his life, I am really enjoying keeping tabs on a number of folks ranging from other VCs to smart entrepreneurs/angel investors to some of my portfolio entrepreneurs. And, I sense doing so will help me stay on top of what is going on, and occasionally give me a chance to broadcast messages I want to get out there (I have yet to try it for portfolio recruiting but certainly plan to).
I am convinced that microblogging is here to stay, and that Twitter is on its way to becoming a platform of sorts.
More interesting to me than my personal use of Twitter is the broader question of how investors can make a great return out of the emergence of a microblogging platform. This morning I read that Twitter is hiring a product manager for monetization; and also that Stock Twits just raised an angel round. These juxtaposed headlines raise the perennial question whether the opportunity is best seized by the platform provider or by others who provide applications on top of the platform. I supposed history suggests it is always good to be the platform provider, though in this case I am not so sure that the app guys won’t have more success monetizing.
I’ll be watching, and tweeting, with interest.