In March 2011, Website Magazine published an article on blogging and social sharing platform Posterous. I knew at the time that Posterous could not stay indepedent for long, and based on news coming out today, I was right.
Twitter officially announced it has acquired Posterous. As many will suggest in the coming hours, days and weeks, this may just be a "talent" acquisition, but look a little deeper and you'll find reason enough to believe that Twitter is getting ready for a very big, very social fight. It's about to move from providing a platform which hosts conversations alone, to one that helps users manage conversations, as well as produce and curate content. That's a better (more appealing) product for users - and investors - in my opinion.
What likely made Posterous so appealing to Twitter is functionality that enables users to host a more familiar, more traditional presence on the Web - or anywhere for that matter. Twitter's problem so far as I see it is that it bleeds users. Do want to see a video? You're off to YouTube. How about an image? There you go towards Instagram or one of the many other Twitter-friendly image hosting services. Twitter has developed some features that counter that but not entirely. Everything changes with the ownership of Posterous however.
Couple the Posterous acquisition with a recently released advertising product and a desire/need to compete with more robust social networks (we're looking at you Google+ and Facebook) and Twitter may have just bought its way back into contention. Too little, too late? Perhaps, but a smart acquisition all the same.
Posterous indicated that its service will stay up and running and that it will notify users if and when they begin to change the service.