A chart for music tweets is coming

By Ben Sisario / New York Times News Service

Published Mar 28, 2014 at 12:01AM

Chatter about music is everywhere on Twitter. Soon there will be a Billboard chart to rank all of it.

On Thursday, the two companies will announce a deal to create the Billboard Twitter Real-Time Charts: continuously updated lists of the music that are being talked about and shared on Twitter in the United States. The charts, to be published on Billboard.com and through the publication’s Twitter feed, are expected to be introduced in May.

“We have been looking for a way to do a real-time chart for some time,” said John Amato, co-president of the entertainment group of Guggenheim Media, a division of the private equity firm Guggenheim Partners, which owns Billboard. “We couldn’t think of a better way to do that than with Twitter.”

The deal suggests an effort by Twitter to correct one of its rare public missteps: its .Music app, which was introduced with fanfare a year ago but quickly fizzled. The application was publicized as a way to rank the popularity of music on Twitter, and for its users to find the music their friends were listening to. Music is the most-discussed topic on the service, Twitter says; of its top 10 accounts, seven are those of pop stars.

But the app was unwieldy, and by last fall Twitter executives were admitting privately that a new approach was needed. Last week Twitter finally removed .Music from Apple’s app store, and said that it would no longer work after April 18.

Amato said the new chart would monitor “positive” mentions and filter out negative ones, although the methodology for doing this was not announced.