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Twitter unveils raft of content deals but stresses it is ‘not a competitor’ to traditional media

Twitter has revealed plans to strengthen its video content in Asia Pacific after striking more than 50 deals with publishers and broadcasters covering sports, entertainment and news.

The move will bring to the platform “hundreds of hours” of live streaming and video highlights, the social media firm said.

Among the new content includes UEFA Champions League football through FMA Indonesia, English Premier football through Stadium Astro Malaysia and news through Vice Media. Of the 53 deals struck – some of which were renewals of existing agreements – 19 will feature live streams.

“Video continue to be an important way to stay informed and engaged on Twitter, especially for the younger millennial audience in Asia Pacific,” vice president of Twitter Asia Pacific Maya Hari said. “The move strengthens Twitter’s presence and partnerships in the region, sharing with the world what happening right now in Asia Pacific and for global audiences to talk about.”

She added the video content is brand safe “and will appeal to audiences and advertisers in APAC”.

Twitter global VP of content partnerships, Kay Madati, said the company was “accelerating growth” in the region, and described the platform as complementary to traditional media and “not a competitor”.

Amid ongoing debates about whether publishers are earning their fair share of revenue from their content on Facebook, Jennie Sager, Twitter’s director of content partnerships across Japan and Asia Pacific, said in contrast, publishers are earning more money than ever before from Twitter.

Jennie Sager: We are aggressively investing in video

“I can only go off of the feedback that we hear directly from publishers and partners, and the feedback that we get is that we are very high-touch and we treat the word ‘partnership’ in the truest sense,” she told Mumbrella Australia in response to questions about whether the revenue split between social media giants and local content creators is fair.

“So when we work with them, it’s very much a two-way street where we discuss their objectives and their goals with them and work together to come up with the best solution, so hopefully, yes [our relationship is more positive and productive than that of Facebook],” she said.

“Partners often say that we’re the best to work with, and we’ve been focused on monetisation with partners longer than any other platform. So, I think there are key points of difference with Twitter, and publishers are making more money than ever before on our platform right now.”

Sager said it was “aggressively investing in video and live and in bringing the best content to the platform that supports the conversation”.

“I think one thing that sets us apart is we are not producing custom content ourselves,” she said. “We are not trying to be a Netflix, we’re not looking at streaming, customised, self-produced shows or anything like that.

“We are partnering with publishers and organisations that are bringing their content to our platform, so I think that’s one thing that’s different about Twitter.”

Among the deals in Asia Pacific are with Comic Con India, Bloomberg, Filmfare, Red Chillies Entertainment, NBCUniversal, Sony Music, Viacom International Media Network, Cricbuzz, Asian Golf Tour and Fox Sports Asia.

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