The eventual summary on Techcrunch of the hacked Twitter documents released earlier this week is an unprecedented behind-the-scenes look at the fastest growing company on the web.
Interestingly, while potential Google and Microsoft relationships are discussed in detail, and granted the protracted Facebook acquisition talks are now behind them, I generally got the sense that the team is side-lining their most immediate opportunity: to outright own the public (search-able) social networking space that Facebook is still lacking.
We know Facebook is working to fill this (now obvious) void as fast as they can, but it will be slow and difficult to implement. Despite this, at least from the available evidence, there’s not much to indicate that the Twitter team is equally focused on building out their own social graph fully enough to really compete in this space. Twitter is a unique service, granted, and Google and much of the media may be right to separate the “micro-blogging” space from traditional social networking, but it’s clear from these documents that all this is still very much up in the air.
Arrington lists “Identity Crisis” among his subheadings, and there’s definitely a strong element of that, perhaps understandably, since none of this information was ever intended for public release.
But I will say this: Twitter is not in any position to compete with Google directly, Google indexes information, Twitter indexes tweets. Any strategy along those lines is deluded. While clearly (in their own vernacular) “trending” right now, they will eventually need to be fully indexed by Google to stand any change of reaching their user and traffic targets. They need to just accept that.
But in terms of Facebook, and even more so, Microsoft - they’re right to be wary of any partnerships and default to full-on competition mode.
As a side note, it will be interesting to see what this rouses out of Google in terms of password recovery and other security issues related to Google Apps and accounts.
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