Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

After Twitter’s Acquisition of Scroll, Nuzzel Will Be Shutting Down

Scroll owns Nuzzel; Twitter is buying Scroll. Scroll’s CEO, Tony Haile, wrote about what that means for Nuzzel. Got all that? Cool:

We acquired Nuzzel in late 2018 when we realized that if we didn’t, Nuzzel would shut down. We believed that Jonathan Abrams and team had created something special: a way to make sure you never missed the important story or lost the context of a moment, delivered in a way that emphasized time well spent. We didn’t want to see that go away because it was ahead of its time.

[…]

When Twitter approached us about bringing Scroll into their broader subscription plans, all sides were excited about what we could do with Nuzzel and spent weeks trying to find a way to bring it with us. In the end, we found that the only way for Nuzzel to meet the scalability requirements necessary for a company like Twitter was to rebuild the service from scratch.

Nuzzel is the quintessential expression of what Twitter hopes developers will do with its public APIs. So much time and effort has gone into making it difficult to build superior third-party Twitter clients, with the promise that what Twitter wants are apps like these. Nuzzel surfaced popular links shared by the people you follow and their friends — and that’s mostly it. How great is that? Instead of relying on Twitter’s black box algorithm for surfacing interesting tweets, it is purely based on what is popular; trending links without the trending topic baggage.

But, much like Favstar and Stellar before it, and Favrd before that, Nuzzel seems to have been too good and too simple to last as an independent product. What a pisser.