Report: Microsoft & Google Fighting Over Who Will Be Twitter Search Partner

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. That’s what it must feel like right now at Twitter, which has become incredibly hot over the past several months. The pressure is building. Who will buy it? How will it be monetized? What sort of tool or service will it evolve into? These are subjects now of almost daily speculation.

Today AllThingsD reports that Microsoft and Google are once again doing battle to become the exclusive paid search partner for Twitter:

After last week’s explosive rumor that Google was in “late-stage” talks to acquire Twitter, which BoomTown reported was wildly premature, I set out to try to sort out exactly what was going on.

As I found out, there was a lot–mostly much talking related to possible product partnerships, centered around Google or Microsoft, most especially around a deal to become the one to exclusively deliver search ads to Twitter properties.

The last time the two “internet giants” faced off was over the Verizon Wireless default search relationship. Microsoft won, many speculate, with large revenue guarantees.

A similar dynamic, assuming the AllThingsD story is accurate, could be at play with Twitter. Microsoft may be willing to offer revenue guarantees to keep Twitter away from Google. However, Google has many more advertisers than Microsoft and could better monetize Twitter search on a pure click basis.

One might also see the winner of this competition as a potential buyer (one day) of Big T. As AllThingsD points out, Twitter co-founder Biz Stone worked for Google and so that may bias him in either direction. It’s not entirely clear.

Stay tuned for more exciting Tweets.

Related Topics: Channel: Mobile | Google: Partnerships | Microsoft: Bing Mobile | Microsoft: Partnerships | Top News

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About The Author: is a Contributing Editor at Search Engine Land. He writes a personal blog Screenwerk, about SoLoMo issues and connecting the dots between online and offline. He also posts at Internet2Go, which is focused on the mobile Internet. Follow him @gsterling.

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