UK Twitter Users Get ‘Moments’ Breaking News Feed

Twitter has struck the latest blow in the battle of the social media platforms this week by introducing its breaking news feed known as ‘Moments’ to UK Twitter users. The UK is the 3rd stop after the U.S. and Brazil in the international rollout of the feature that began at the end of last year.

What Is 'Moments'?

Twitter Moments distributes media rich breaking news stories via a Twitter feed. In the UK the stories are being selected and curated by a team of UK journalists and take the form of video, photography and eye witness tweets under a number of categories including news, sport and entertainment.


The in-house team are using algorithmic tools to select stories with maximum appeal before packaging them in a simple to digest and appealing way that some commentators have referred to as ‘eye candy style’.


The Moments service is intended to have a very ‘British’ feel and produce ‘picture first’ tweets that stand out from other tweets because of their rich media format and up to the minute, close to the action news appeal. The Moments feed can be accessed via a highly visible tab.

Why?

The hope is that Twitter will gain much wider appeal across a wider section of the UK audience, the same kind of audience that regularly access the BBC and other broadcast news media. In essence Moments allows Twitter to compete with popular news media, as well as the news content now being produced by mobile device makers such as Apple with its News app, and Android OEM Samsung with their new content partner deals.


This is one of the reasons why Moments in the UK is being launched with the help of 18 high profile production partners who include The Sun, Sky News, BuzzFeed UK, Glamour magazine. Other content partners for UK Moments include the Premier League, Have I Got News for You (BBC), VICE, Sugarscape, Food Network, The Economist, the Met Office, Popjustice, Global Radio, Vevo, BT Sport, Empire, Sky Sports and STV.

Monetisation

Up until now Twitter has been an alternative to mainstream social media platforms where a person can tap in to the ‘mini blogs’ and thoughts of many people whose opinions are of interest to them. There is of course an argument that this lacks a central main focus of news, but more importantly it doesn’t allow room for much focused commercialisation, and it doesn’t necessarily benefit shareholders.


The other reason therefore for the introduction of Moments to the UK is of course as a form of revenue by allowing commercial partners to produce “Promoted Moments”.