Twitter announced today that it will start offering creators the ability to run ads alongside their videos, and receive a significant portion of the ad revenue as a result. According to Recode, Twitter users that are part of the program will get 70 percent of the ad revenue, a significant step up from the 55 percent that YouTube offers.
The catch is that Twitter’s revenue split only applies to video posted on Twitter. It doesn’t apply to Vine or Periscope (which Twitter owns), nor is there a way to display ads and thus earn revenue on other types of content, like text or photos. If you’re a “Twitter comedian” (lol) who posts funny one-liners, there’s still no way to monetize that through a first-party option — you’re SOL.
At the very least, this will encourage popular users to post video natively on Twitter in addition to other channels (the content does not have to be exclusive to Twitter). But it’s also unclear whether Twitter is equipped to handle video publishing as a business. Introducing money into the mix makes video publishing, and issues like copyright and fair use, incredibly thorny. Currently, nobody can monetize their work on Twitter directly through Twitter; it’s a relatively freewheeling, copyright-eschewing sector of the internet. Does that change going forward?