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Twitter buys Bluefin, gets into ad tracking

Twitter's purchase of the research company Bluefin is about gathering the sort of social media info that can be used to extract more money from advertisers.

This week, Twitter bought a company that's good at tracking online buzz -- in other words, what's getting written about, tweeted about, photographed and shared. Twitter's purchase of the research company Bluefin for an undisclosed amount is about gathering the sort of social media info that can be used to extract more money from advertisers.

But as Slate Tech Blogger Will Oremus explains, Twitter plus Bluefin is also about a strange habit we've picked up. When the TV goes on, the tablet or smartphone doesn't go off?

"That is going to sound crazy to a lot of people out there. They'll say, 'how on earth could you be reading Twitter and watching TV at the same time?' But, about a quarter of the people out there listening are going to be going, 'oh yeah, I do that all the time,'" says Oremus.

According to Oremus, TV advertisments have been a very lucrative business for a very long time, yet advertisers are still very much in the dark about how their ads are working. With the Bluefin acquisition, Twitter may be able to finally answer that question.

About the author

Will Oremus is a tech blogger for Slate.
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