A few weeks ago, Jeff Chandler reviewed Adjix on Performancing. Adjix lets Twitter users (or perhaps other microblogging services) monetize their accounts by shrinking URLs a-la tinyurl, but then puts up ads on the resulting page.
Based on the comment thread and the one on the follow-up post detailing an interview with Adjix’s CEO, readers mostly had negative impressions. Many were appalled at the thought of monetizing Twitter readership in this way. It was tantamount to facilitating spam, they say, and this would most likely result in loss of credibility. Others have commented that Adjix is impractical because of its use of frames rather than redirects, which effectively makes bookmarking difficult.
If you ask me, I don’t think monetizing Twitter is inherently bad. Much like blogging–initially blogging “pros” were perhaps seen as sellouts, going against the perceived independent nature of blogging. However, blog monetization has grown to be an accepted norm. It is writing, after all. It is publishing, after all. If you have ads on newspapers and magazine, why not blogs, right?
As for Twitter, Twitterrific does monetize by displaying ads in its freeware. New media mavens use Twitter and similar services to gain or share insider info or opinions. Twitter does have its business uses, like status messaging and collaboration, or perhaps getting customer feedback. But my opinion is that directly monetizing Twitter–or at least attempting to–still comes with that negative perception. Could this change anytime soon? Given the 140-character limits for each tweet, I think this needs creativity and luck to pull off.
As an endnote, Jeff posts the results of his experiment on Performancing. With a grand total of $0.01, Jeff has his doubts.