Twitter’s daily users surged to 186 million in the second quarter, up 34 percent from a year ago.
But revenue fell 19 percent to $683 million, missing Wall Street estimates of $700 million. The company also had a net loss of $124 million, it said on Thursday (not Wednesday, as this item originally stated.)
Twitter executives blamed the advertising slump caused by the pandemic, and said some marketers also became skittish about promoting their products during the Black Lives Matter protests. Twitter said it saw advertising return once the protests began subsiding.
The company also said it was working on building more “direct-response” ad features, which would allow people to purchase or download things directly from their Twitter timelines. Twitter has traditionally largely focused on brand-awareness campaigns. On Facebook, direct-response advertising makes up the bulk of the social network’s ad revenue.
The company continues to deal with the fallout of last week’s breach in which hackers took over dozens of accounts of prominent Twitter users in a haphazard Bitcoin fraud. On Thursday, the company said the hackers had gained access the direct messages of up to 36 of the 130 of the hacked accounts.
Twitter recently started labeling some of President Trump’s messages to indicate that he was spreading falsehoods or glorifying violence. On Tuesday, Twitter said it would take down accounts associated with QAnon, the pro-Trump conspiracy theory, citing concerns about how such content could incite violence. It was the first time a large social media service took sweeping action against QAnon. Facebook is planning a similar takedown in coming weeks, people with knowledge of the plans have said.