Dollars and Sense: Survey Says Nobody Would Pay for Twitter

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David Brabyn/Corbis

Is the chance to write and share 140 characters at a time worth losing 140 (or more) pennies?

A new study conducted by USC’s Annenberg School of Communications and Journalism says no. The university’s Center for the Digital Future found that 49 percent of all Internet users it reached out to have engaged in services like Twitter. But then came the ever-important business follow-up question — “Would you be willing to pay for Twitter?”

The staggering result — zero percent answered yes. Center of the Digital Future director Jeffrey I. Cole attributes that goose egg to the consumer’s reluctance to abandon the benefits of the current no-cost precedent.

“Such an extreme finding that produced a zero response underscores the difficulty of getting Internet users to pay for anything that they already receive for free,” said Cole in a statement.