Twitter's effect on the 2016 presidential election cycle will have lasting reverberations. Yet the company could potential be out of business by the time Americans head to the polls in 2020.
The current election also reinforces the idea that Twitter is becoming less of a social network and more of a news-making medium with a social bent, according to Raynauld. Twitter's future is uncertain, but the format it introduced will have a lasting impact on politics, he says.
When Twitter's cofounders formed the company a decade ago it's unlikely that they "envisioned helping to transform the political landscape, but that's what they have done," Rice says. "Although they have struggled to find a profitable business model to support it, they ended up creating an important platform for political expression that has helped people find their voices."
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