X (Twitter) paywalls XPro (TweetDeck)

X (Twitter) has paywalled XPro (TweetDeck) for both brand and personal accounts.

Users now need to be Blue subscribers to access the tool, which has been rebranded as XPro under Elon Musk’s reign.

Why we care. Some people will feel disgruntled about paying for a tool that has historically been free, so may leave the platform and look for alternatives. This is likely to negatively impact the discoverability of content.

Disappointing. Julie F Bacchini, PPC expert and managing director of PPC Chat, told Search Engine Land that the move would have a significant impact on the marketing community:

  • “For Twitter based communities, like PPC Chat, it is a serious blow to community interactivity. PPC Chat has historically been a Twitter based community with lots of activity centered on our community hashtag.”
  • “Unfortunately, due to changes in the past six months and culminating with making XPro a paid only feature, we have had to move our weekly chats off of Twitter and onto our other channels.”
  • “It also potentially really hampers discoverability of content and like minded follows as it is a lot more difficult to follow lists without a tool like XPro. I get that X is trying to increase its revenue, but putting a historically free tool that really enhanced the Twitter user experience behind a paid subscription is disappointing.”
Screenshot 2023 08 16 At 18.03.08 800x331

Final nail in the coffin. Anu Adegbola, PPC expert and founder of PPC Live UK, told Search Engine Land that this change was a disappointing move for the marketing community. She said:

  • “TweetDeck was a platform X offered for free – and it didn’t make many updates to it whilst it was free. Yet now they are going to make it a paid service? That is not on!”
  • “It was a nice way to organise follows and see multiple groups of follows at once without actually having to follow people – for example, you could just view by lists. This change is going to mean a lot less time on X and people seeing important tweets a lot less.”
  • “X has really become a mess lately and this is the final nail in the coffin for me. TweetDeck was essential for me to drown out troll noise and only pay attention to people who I thought were worth paying attention to. This now goes away.”

Why now? X announced that it was going to paywall XPro after rolling out several improvements to its functionality last month. Following the modifications, the platform now supports:

  • Full composer functionality
  • Spaces
  • Video docking
  • Polls
  • And more

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How to switch over. X explained that all your saved searches, lists, and columns will carry over to the new XPro. You’ll be prompted to import your columns when you load the application for the first time. However, in order to access the new platform, you will need an X Premium subscription, which starts at $8 a month.

Teams functionality in XPro is still temporarily unavailable, however, X has confirmed that the service will be restored in the coming weeks.

What has X said? X is yet to comment on putting TXPro behind a paywall since initially announcing its plans to do so back in July.

Deep dive. Visit the X Help Center for more information.

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About the author

Nicola Agius

Nicola Agius is Paid Media Editor of Search Engine Land after joining in 2023. She covers paid search, paid social, retail media and more. Prior to this, she was SEO Director at Jungle Creations (2020-2023), overseeing the company’s editorial strategy for multiple websites. She has over 15 years of experience in journalism and has previously worked at OK! Magazine (2010-2014), Mail Online (2014-2015), Mirror (2015-2017), Digital Spy (2017-2018) and The Sun (2018-2020). She also previously teamed up with SEO agency Blue Array to co-author Amazon bestselling book ‘Mastering In-House SEO’.

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