Elon Musk, Twitter’s new owner, is reportedly considering introducing a “Paywalled Video” option in addition to the $8 verification cost that was announced after the acquisition.
The sponsored video option, as reported by The Washington Post, enables producers to charge for their material while also providing Twitter with a portion of the proceeds. However, Twitter’s Product Trust Team “identified the risk as high,” according to internal emails published by The Washington Post, which also emphasize problems with legal compliance.
Twitter’s internal teams don’t have much time to examine the risk of the new function, as only three days are allotted for assessment before it goes live. Options for monetization include fees such as $1, $2, $5, or $10 to unlock a video. Although unpaid users can still show their approval through likes and retweets, the video will be pixelated until a fee is paid.
It was not made clear in the report whether the paywall feature was implemented before or after Musk purchased Twitter for $44 billion last week. In any case, the CEO certainly isn’t afraid to shake things up. In addition to instituting a verification charge, he has already terminated key personnel at top management. Moreover, Musk is considering re-introducing Vine to the platform.
Musk has been vocal in defense of his commercialization intentions on the site itself, saying that the verification feature “will also give Twitter a revenue stream to reward content creators.”
Twitter currently provides several ways for content creators to make money from their work, such as the Tip Jar and Super Follow. Super Follow is a monthly premium option where the creator provides an “extra level of access and bonus content.” In this case, users’ timelines will feature blurred movies requiring a one-time purchase to unblur.