Twitter has announced that its newsletter service, Revue, will be discontinued. For over a month, rumours have circulated that the service would be discontinued; now, on January 12th, 2023, we have confirmation and an official date.
A support post on the Revue website states that users will no longer be able to access their accounts after that date, and all data associated with the service will be yanked off. Up until that time, authors who have utilised the service can access an archive of their analytics and work and a list of their subscribers. Revue informed its users of this information by email and said that beginning on December 20th; it will no longer be accepting paid newsletter subscriptions.
In January 2021, Twitter purchased Revue with the intention of improving conditions for the platform’s long-form authors and journalists. It was also a boon to the social network’s ability to compete with newsletter services like Substack and Ghost, as well as with Facebook, which was also thought to be interested in entering the newsletter market at the time. In the latter half of that year, Facebook released Bulletin, a recently discontinued tool.
After Revue is no more, Twitter users who wish to express themselves more fully may have a few viable alternatives. According to Musk, the company is working on increasing the restriction from 280 to 4,000 characters. His claims about future updates to the product should be taken with a grain of salt. However, Twitter’s subscriptions (also known as “Super Follows”), which enable content creators to make content that can only be viewed by paying, could replace Revue in some situations.
Although Musk has been drumming up support for reducing Twitter’s reliance on advertising revenue, it seems strange that he would shut down a service that likely generated some subscription revenue. Perhaps he’s preparing to purchase Substack and realised that maintaining two different newsletter platforms was unnecessary.