Twitter’s “Gryphon” Job Listing Reveals a Subscription Platform Could Take Flight

Twitter CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey gestures while interacting with students at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in New Delhi on November 12, 2018. Photo by PRAKASH SINGH/AFP via Getty Images

The takeaways

  • Twitter posted a job listing for a full-stack software engineer to join team “Gryphon” in developing a subscription platform.
  • Twitter previously looked into a subscription model, but the new reports show it’s become a stronger possibility.
  • The revelation aligns with Twitter’s intention to diversify its revenues beyond advertising.

What happened?

Yesterday, the Verge reported a Twitter job listing hinting that the platform is currently developing its “first” subscription platform. The listing seeks a full-stack software engineer for a team codenamed “Gryphon,” references that Twitter initially removed then restored.

Nevertheless, Twitter clearly wants the platform to be “reused by others in the future.” The original listing describes Team Gryphon working closely with the internal payments team and the team. Additionally, the successful applicant will lead the Payment and Subscription client work whilst liaising with the engineering team.

The news boosted Twitter’s shares, which closed 7.34% higher yesterday. Twitter’s main earnings come from advertising and data licensing.

What could Gryphon deliver?

In 2019, Twitter’s CFO Ned Segal declared to CNBC’s Squawk Box that “We’ve got more work to do on the revenue product side.” Product diversity is clearly in evidence, with the company recently announcing new releases whilst testing potential features.

Reports of Twitter exploring subscription models date back to 2017 when it floated the idea of an ad-free Tweetdeck. At the time, the company reported Q1 losses of $548 million compared to this year’s earnings of $808 million. This time, it’s entirely speculative as to what the new platform will offer. Current speculation runs from monetised video streaming content to user subscriptions to certain accounts for exclusive content. A combination of the two, if the accounts in question are popular brands or content creators, is no less feasible.

For now, it should be taken as a given that Twitter is getting more serious about diversifying both its platform and revenues. That makes it one to watch amongst its social media peers for trending developments.

You may also like

Comments are closed.