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After Site Redesign, Twitter Co-Founder Evan Williams Relinquishes CEO Title

Twitter's co-founder and chief executive, Evan Williams, has decided to turn his attention to "pushing product direction." In a statement, he said he has asked the company's COO, Dick Costolo, to take over as CEO:

Starting today, I’ll be completely focused on product strategy.

When I insisted on bringing Dick into the COO role a year ago, I got a lot of questions from my board. But I knew Dick would be a strong complement to me, and this has proven to be the case. During his year at Twitter, he has been a critical leader in devising and executing our revenue efforts, while simultaneously and effectively making the trains run on time in the office. Dick can be even more effective at this now because Ali Rowghani, Adam Bain, Mike Abbott, Katie Stanton and Kevin Thau joined our leadership team this year and are having a big impact. Given Dick’s track record as a three-time successful CEO, I’m confident we can make this a smooth transition.

In The Twitterverse, his announcement read like this: "I have decided to ask our COO, Dick Costolo, to become Twitter's CEO. Starting today, I'll be completely focused on product strategy." (That's 133 characters, if you're counting.)

Why the change?

"The move to make Costolo chief executive seems to be further reiteration that the site's main focus now is turning a profit," The Washington Postreports

PC Magazine puts this in context: "The news comes the same day that Twitter experienced several glitches, officially launched its Promoted Accounts program, and unveiled its new Google TV app."

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David Gura
Based in New York, David Gura is a correspondent on NPR's business desk. His stories are broadcast on NPR's newsmagazines, All Things Considered, Morning Edition and Weekend Edition, and he regularly guest hosts 1A, a co-production of NPR and WAMU.
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