Twitter has acquired the Colorado based startup Gnip, for an undisclosed sum, in what some on the internets today are calling a defensive move to Apple’s recent purchase of fellow Twitter “firehose” reseller Topsy:
It is understood that Apple’s acquisition of Topsy raised red flags at Twitter HQ. Twitter relies on its ecosystem of data resellers, however small. With one of its few data resellers in the hands of Apple, it made sense for Twitter to bring a big data company in-house. The company needs to protect its interests and keep the remaining few data resellers out of the hands of competitors. The other option would be less attractive: If Gnip and Datasift were acquired by competitors, Twitter would have to scramble to build out comparable big data infrastructure itself.
With Topsy and Gnip out of the picture only Data Sift and NTT Data remain as “certified (Twitter) data resellers”. Also too: acquisition junkie Google no longer has access to the Twitter firehose.