April 10, 2017

Giving the squeaky tweet some grease

Twitter’s annual shareholder meeting is coming up soon, and there’s a new idea on the table: Turning the company into a cooperative.

Twitter’s annual shareholder meeting is coming up soon, which means the inevitable “Oh god, how will we ever make money?” conversations are starting up again. But there’s a new idea this time: Turning the company into a cooperative.

“Wait, like living on a commune and selling carrots?” Nope, not that type of co-op.

Rather, the proposal would give ownership of the company to the tweeters who love it, rather than profit-grubbing shareholders.

It might be crazy enough to work

With almost 3.5k signatures, the company is required to put the movement to vote — even if there’s slim-to-no chance it’s approved (the board of directors even said it’s a waste of time).

But the concept that Twitter’s value should be based on its social impact, not its balance sheet, is worth consideration.

Despite their plunging stock, the blue bird continues to be extremely socially relevant, from reporting breaking news to giving the commander-in-chief an outlet during his bathroom breaks.

But big companies need to care about money, right?

Not necessarily. Look at Wikipedia, whose non-profit mission and 4.9B monthly visits fundamentally changed how people learn things.

Or The Associated Press, Green Bay Packers, and RE, all who successfully operate with varying degrees of a user-owned, cooperative model.

So Jack, if you’re listening, change the narrative from a struggling social network to the voice of the people.

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