Extra Credit Blog
Twitter is celebrating 10 year! It was created in 2006 by Jack Dorsey. He sent his first tweet on March 21 of that year, hence this week’s celebrations of Twitter’s first decade in existence.
Twitter was one of those phenomena that used SXSW as a platform to really take off in 2007. The iconic hashtag (#) followed soon after. Incidents such as the US Airways plane crash on the Hudson River, the Arab Spring, and the Boston Bombings introduced the concept of Twitter as a media outlet in its own right. Images and news surface first on Twitter and that’s where most people go now when a story breaks.
Reporters covering breaking news resort to quoting what is being said on Twitter as “news” in the absence of any substantive reporting of their own. The latest terrorist bombings this week in Belgium were just one more example.
Most of us use Twitter on a daily basis without thinking. It’s has become a fundamental part of our media consumption. It helps us track real-time news and current events, and it leads us down interesting alleyways to discover compelling content we wouldn’t otherwise have seen.
It has gain competitors such as Snapchat and Instagram. But it hasn’t gone out of fashion with younger generations in quite the same way as platforms such as Facebook. Twitter can still be all things to all people. It’s a vital component of most communications and marketing strategies.
As of the end of last year, Twitter claimed 320 million active monthly users 80% of whom were active via mobile and 1 billion monthly unique visits to sites with embedded tweets. Only 21% of Twitter accounts are based in the U.S., so it is a genuinely global platform.