Twitter in 24-hour news streaming venture with Bloomberg

The service could help Twitter expand its user base.
The service could help Twitter expand its user base.PHOTO: AFP

It will include user-generated content, along with live video reporting from journalists

WASHINGTON • Twitter is launching a 24-hour streaming news channel in partnership with Bloomberg Media, in a major expansion of the social media firm's video operations.

The new streaming channel "will combine the vast global editorial and news-gathering capabilities of Bloomberg with the digital power of Twitter," a joint statement from the two firms said on Monday.

Mr Michael Bloomberg, the founder of the financial news and information service and a former New York mayor, joined Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey in New York to make the announcement.

The streaming channel is set to launch later this year and will include user-generated content from Twitter, which will be verified by Bloomberg editors, along with live video reporting from journalists at the news organisation.

"Today's global news consumer wants and needs more than what's currently available," said Mr Justin Smith, CEO of Bloomberg Media. "With this new network, we are setting out to reinvent the digital breaking news experience."

Mr Smith told The Wall Street Journal, which first reported the tie-up, that the new network would "be focused on the most important news for an intelligent audience around the globe and it's going to be broader in focus than our existing network".

WATCH THIS SPACE

With this new network, we are setting out to reinvent the digital breaking news experience.

MR JUSTIN SMITH, CEO of Bloomberg Media, on how the service hopes to appeal to today's global news consumer.

Twitter chief operating officer Anthony Noto said in a statement: "Twitter's speed and vast global network of content and commentary combined with the high quality, editorial rigour of Bloomberg is a... powerful combination."

Financial details of the new venture were not disclosed.

The service could help Twitter expand its user base, which has been growing at a slower pace than its social media rivals. Twitter, based in San Francisco, has been seeking to broaden its appeal beyond its core user base of celebrities, politicians and journalists, ramping up efforts in video and live sports.

But in its quarterly results last week, Twitter reported a drop in revenue, despite boosting its monthly user base to 328 million, up 14 per cent from a year ago. Twitter, which has never reported a profit, said its net loss narrowed to US$62 million (S$86.4 million) from US$80 million a year earlier.

The social media platform already offers some live video news through a partnership with the streaming application Cheddar.

It had rights last year to stream some National Football League games, but lost that for the upcoming season to Amazon.

Twitter streamed more than 800 hours of premium video content last quarter, Mr Noto said.

"We could not be prouder of the success we have achieved so quickly since launching live streaming premium content," he said.

Content to be aired on Twitter due to its new alliances include US women's basketball games and music concerts.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 03, 2017, with the headline 'Twitter in 24-hour news streaming venture with Bloomberg'. Print Edition | Subscribe