It's been a difficult time to safely see friends and family, but there are more ways than ever to communicate and keep up with people online. For instance, you can follow someone on Twitter, and just succumb to the doomscrolling reality that is our lives right now. And, with the app's latest feature, you'll soon be able to "Super Follow" someone if you can't get enough of their content.
Twitter announced its new function during Thursday's Analyst event. With the Super Follow tool, users can charge followers $4.99 (£2.99) a month for extra content, including subscriber-only newsletters, deals and discounts, and exclusive tweets. Screenshots tease the kind of content users can put behind paywalls, including videos and teasers. Another screenshot shows a Fleet — basically, Twitter's version of an Instagram Story — marked with a "Super Followers" tag. Think of the feature as somewhat of a hybrid between Patreon, OnlyFans, and Instagram's Close Friends function.
So far, there have been mixed reactions to the new tool: many have argued against charging money for Twitter (or just insisted that the feature won't take off), and some have wondered whether news outlets will use the feature as another paywall. But others have noted that popular Twitter users should have the option to easily monetise their content, just as they can on YouTube and Facebook. "We believe that content creators should get paid for the greatness that they bring to this website," wrote Lara Cohen, Twitter's Head of Global Partnerships.
Along with the Super Follow, Twitter unveiled Communities, which will function similarly to Facebook Groups or Reddit communities. Unlike Twitter's Lists function, which allows users to create specialised feeds devoted to different topics or groups of people, Communities will let users share exclusive tweets with specific audiences.
The past few months have been huge for Twitter: the site introduced Fleets in November and Spaces, their Clubhouse-style live voice chat feature, in December. The Fleet function has already been updated into the app, but Spaces are currently available to a small test group. It's unknown when Super Follows and Communities will be instated, but I for one am just relieved that a certain avid Twitter user was banned before he could take advantage of all these new and varied ways to reach audiences.