Twitter celebrates its seventh birthday this month with 200 million users worldwide- who now send an average of 400 million tweets every day.The service, originally called “stat.us” and then “twittr”, was launched in 2006 by Jack Dorsey.
He says he was inspired by signing up to blogging service Live Journal in 2000 and spent the next six years refining his idea for “a more ‘live’ LiveJournal. Real-time, up-to-date, from the road”.
Now people use Twitter to campaign, share and discuss news, fundraise, propose marriage, challenge authority – and try to catch the eye of teen heart-throb Justin Bieber, who at time of writing has more than 36 million followers.
On Twitter everyone is so accessible – you can tweet anyone. With Facebook, you have to be friends with them first.
The problem with Twitter – which is the power of Twitter – is that you are publishing into the world. It’s out there with the same power whether you have one follower or whether you have three million followers.
The joy of Twitter is that it’s a stream, you step into it, you step out of it.
You can look at the world in terms of before and after Twitter. Before Twitter, from a consumer standpoint, lots of news and information services were out there, but we hadn’t really been deep into the mobile-app revolution.
In the world after Twitter, suddenly people have access to real-time news and information.
• Each message posted on Twitter can be up to 140 characters long, including web addresses, user names and hashtags
• There are 200 million active Twitter users worldwide
• Every day 400 million tweets are sent every day
• It took three years, two months and one day for the first billion tweets to be sent
• There are 10 million users in the UK, and 80% of them access Twitter via their mobile phones
• Of Twitter’s global users, 60% check the service on their phones
• Some 40% of Twitter users choose not to write any tweets themselves, but use the platform to follow news and interests