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Twitter Announces @Anywhere Platform

During his SXSW keynote interview today, Twitter’s Evan Williams announced the service’s new @platform. While the keynote interview itself was rather forgettable (a large part of the audience left before it was over), the @platform will have wide-reaching consequences for Twitter and its ecosystem. This new platform will allow publishers to integrate Twitter deeper into their site and recreate the “open, engaging interactions” their readers expect from using Twitter “without sending them to Twitter.com.”

The new platform, for example, will allow users to identify and follow Twitter users on third-party sites without leaving the third-party site. Some of the sites that will soon use this new service include Amazon, Yahoo, Digg, Bing and the New York Times. This, according to Evan, will allow publishers to make sure that their audience is aware of their Twitter feeds, and allow users to follow a site’s or columnist’s feed without every having to leave the site. According to Williams, this will allow publishers to find more followers, and it will also allow Twitter to bring in more users to the site as well as make more non-Twitter users aware of the service. According to Williams, Twitter is launching this service because it wants to lower the barrier of using the service. Given that Twitter’s growth has slowed down in recent months, it only makes sense for the company to try to bring the service to more mainstream users.

While many pundits expected Twitter to announce its ad platform or make an announcement about how the company plans to monetize the service (besides its partnerships with search companies like Google and Microsoft), Twitter did not offer any major insights into its plans today. When asked about the company’s plans, Williams noted that Twitter is not going to go after “low-hanging fruit” and is more interested in creating a sustainable platform.

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