AUSTIN (KXAN) - Nearly everywhere you look around the Austin Convention Centerduring South By Southwest, you'll see eyes glued to a smart phoneor a computer screen.
Many of those people probably are staring at the popularmicroblogging service called Twitter.
Twitter debuted at the South bySouthwest Interactive Festival only three years ago, and thecompany's co-founder Evan Williams spoke Monday to a packed houseat the Austin Convention Center.
Williams debuted Twitter's new @anywhereservice, which boasts better user integration with Twitter on 13various Web sites like The New York Times and Yahoo.
Williams said it allows people to interact with Twitter moreaway from the main Twitter page.
That means 73 percent of those who have signed up for Twitterhave only sent messages 10 times on the service.
Many people said the service has gone from a social platform toa news feed, something Williams confirmed Monday.
"It's often called a social network," Williams said. "But wethink of it differently as an information network that helps peoplediscover what's going on in the world that they care about."
But many people went back into the world leaving thepresentation not caring much for what Twitter's CEO had to say.Twitter was
"I think what we missed is how are you going to make money, howare you going to monetize it?" said Driventide CEO Jai Decker afterlistening to Williams' talk. Driventideis a digital marketing company.
Twitter is funded by venture capitalists. It has made money frompartnerships with Google and other search engines, but just how itcan remain a financially sustainable service, especially withincreasing competition from sites like FourSquare and Gowalla is stillleft for many people to speculate.
"I'm pretty sure they already know how they're going to," saidTwitter user Pete Flynn. "But I think they're waiting for things tofall in place for them to execute them."
"It has turned into less witty comments and less socialinteraction, which I think it's OK," said Lauren Shannon, an activeTwitter user and attendee of the SXSW Interactive Festival. "Ithink Facebook has taken the place of more social interaction."
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