Solution One: Put phriggin’ AdSense ads on everyones profile page already!
Do you honestly think anyone would care? And if they do, offer them a premium “Don’t put ads on my profile page, damn it!” opt-out plan. WeatherBug does it. (For weather info I can get for free by sticking my head out the window!) Why can’t you?
Oh, and don’t even think about charging me for the right to “tweet”. Imagine a world where the ideas of yester-year to impose an SMTP “stamp” came into fruition.
Actually, nevermind. Forget that. SMTP would have never existed (clarification: SMTP, in the form of sendmail, existed *LONG* before the “email stamp” tax ideas came into existence. So SMTP would have survived. The idiotic politicians who made attempt to implement this plan, on the other hand, wouldn’t have survived.), nor would it continue to exist if such a scheme were imposed.
Of course, we all seem willing to pay our mobile phone providers anywhere from a penny to twenty cents USD to send the equivalent of a tweet to our buddies mobile device. With this in mind, herein lies the other revenue streams you seem to be more than happy to neglect,
The vertical application space as well as the pay-to-play web service space.
Are you not a (mobile) service provider? Then act like one, damn it! Charge service providers fees to access *your* network in the same way they *charge you* to access theirs.
Clarification: Just to be clear, by charging service providers fees to access Twitters network I am referring to people who provide value-add services on top of Twitters network, not the individual users of the system. Yes, we do seem willing to pay our service providers for every text message we sent, but this is because there are no other free options. Mobile phone providers own their networks so they can charge whatever the market is willing to pay to gain access to that network. Twitter doesn’t offer me something I can’t get for free somewhere else, so the notion of paying Twitter a fee to send and/or receive a Tweet is not something that would fly.
And if I’m an application provider willing to spend $1k/month to *rent* a five-or-six digit SMS short-code number just to gain access to the integrated SMS network — and therefore access to the collective mobile phone subscribers (not to mention the fees I’m willing to pay for each message processed by an “approved” SMS service provider) — then why wouldn’t I be willing to pay you a similar fee to gain access to your ever expanding base of system subscribers? I pay that money because there is money to be made by the service(s) I provide. So if Twitter offers me that same — or at very least, similar — business opportunity, then what’s going to stop me from paying you for your services as well?
I’ll tell you what: Your system sucks, and the only way to get it to unsuck is to pay someone who knows what they’re doing to (and yes, I do know a few folks in whom I am fully confident know what they’re doing and, as such, could –>) fix it for you and then maintain it from that point forward. Cuz’ apparently your in-house folks have no clue what they’re doing.
And that’s being said with a thick coat of sugar.
So how do you enable yourself to pay someone to build and maintain your system correctly?
One word: Revenue. (Please see above for some ridiculously simple ways to solve that problem.)
Thanks in advance for your consideration(s)! :)