Twitter Users Complain of Unfair Payout Practices

Last week, Twitter announced that it would begin sharing ad revenue with a number of prominent Twitter Blue subscribers. This program offers a select number of high-engagement Twitter users, who have paid for verification, a share in ad revenue based on the interactions their posts receive, particularly in the replies.

Among the beneficiaries were notable right-wing personalities, such as Ian Miles Cheong, Benny Johnson, and QAnon influencer Jacob Creech, who pocketed substantial amounts. However, not all high-profile conservative accounts were included in the first round of payments, leading to (long posts expressing) a lot of anguish and frustration among those who weren’t included.

One such account is @Catturd2, an anonymous right-wing user with nearly two million followers, with whom Elon Musk had a special moment shortly after he acquired the social media platform. Catturd expressed disappointment with the program, suggesting that certain accounts were given payouts as “teacher’s pets” rather than based on their ad revenue potential. 

“I don’t want my account to become a suck-up cringefest,” Catturd added. 

Similar users expressed their frustration in the comments, like pro-Trump comedic duo The Hodge Twins and Dr. Anna Maria Loupis, a Danish medical professional known for promoting anti-vaccine conspiracy theories.

Loupis accused Twitter of shadowbanning her, saying that the platform “has become so bad and unfair,” adding that she’ll start spending time on the platform again when Musk “decides to keep his promises of free speech.”

The specific criteria used to select eligible users and calculations used to determine the payouts remain unclear. However, according to Twitter, accounts must have generated at least 5 million impressions on tweets in the past three months. The revenue-sharing model is based on tweet impressions, with creators earning a certain rate per thousand impressions. The exact rate and whether it varies among users are yet to be confirmed.

A former Twitter executive has criticized the new revenue-sharing program, and basically suggested that it’s all BS, that the calculations “are totally and completely bogus,” and how it’s likely that the platform is just “arbitrarily writing checks to people they like.”

“Any kind of content monetization we’ve done in the past was based on a revenue model,” the executive told The Washington Post. “This just feels pulled out of thin air for a specific subset of creators that [Musk] wanted to placate.”

Information for this story was found via Twitter, The Washington Post, NY Post, and the sources and companies mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to the organizations discussed. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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