If you are witnessing more sponsored ads in your Twitter timeline, then you are not alone. Social media giant, Twitter is running a test that has increased the number of promoted tweets in users' timelines and the company wishes to see what kind of an impact it will have on regular users.
According to a few reliable sources, the test, however, resulted in users complaining about "clickbait-style ads and at least one malicious campaign". Users have also reported that these ads are very annoying and get in the way of general scrolling and tweeting.
As for the promoted tweets themselves, they don’t seem to be checked from any source. For example, one promoted tweet linked to an article about overseas women looking for American men, which was something rather odd.
The tweets are rather click bait-y and are not verified at all. Some of them are rather funny as one of them offered to explain: "Why one in two Slavic women want to spend their lives with a Western man." Another malicious campaign used false articles to promote casinos.
Popular with advertisers, Promoted Tweets has in the past been exploited by Bitcoin scammers as well following which, Twitter had to later remove the malicious campaign.
"We are always running experiments with our ad experience, including with the various aspects of ad frequency and targeting. We welcome feedback on how people feel about the ads they see via the down arrow on Tweets," a Twitter statement read.
Essentially, promoted Tweets are ordinary Tweets purchased by advertisers who want to reach a wider group of users or to spark engagement from their existing followers. They even have a small “promoted” tag at the bottom to let you know exactly why you’re getting the tweet.
According to Twitter, all Promoted Tweets are clearly labelled as Promoted when an advertiser is paying for their placement on the platform. At the same time, the company will have to rework how the new ads will be shown and that they should be relevant to the user, or the platform may suffer a dip in user base.