March 22, 2012
Twitter Turns Six, Users Love It But Wish For More Functionality
Although it feels like a lifetime at internet speeds, Twitter was only started six years ago when co-founder Jack Dorsey sent out his first Twitter message: ℠just setting up my twttr´ in March 2006. Little did he know that his little blue bird was going to become the major source of news, gossip and sharing that it is today.
Founded by Dorsey, Biz Stone, and Evan Williams in March 2006, the micro-blogging site was launched publicly in July 2006. Dick Costolo was appointed the company´s CEO after Williams stepped down in October 2006, reports SFLuxe.
Twitter has shaped how we communicate, it has allowed individuals and social groups to spread ideas and information faster. All in 140 characters or less.
Tweets can be mundane, such as sharing photos of your lunch with co-workers, asking opinions about shoes or just sharing endearments with loved ones. Twitter is also used as a micro-blogging site for country-wide revolutions´ such as the Tunisian uprising of 2010, or the Egyptian revolution of last year.
During the Mumbai terror attacks, Twitter users provided eyewitness accounts and tweeted hospital numbers regularly. The world has gained an instant insight into important social matters by just checking the trending topics on the site. Hash-tags like #Kony2012 and #prayforjapan have contributed in spreading social awareness.
On its sixth birthday, the site now boasts more than 140 million active users, sending 340 million tweets a day, one of which is from Twitter itself. “Without you, of course, there wouldn´t be a Twitter,” the blog post reads. “We mark our sixth birthday with you in mind, and celebrate your myriad ways of engaging, enjoying, and emoting on our platform.”
Twitter said back in September announced that it had reached 100 million active users. At that time, Twitter users included 75 percent of the NBA´s players, 50 percent of the NFL, 82 percent of the U.S. House and 85 percent of the Senate and 87 percent of the Billboard Top 100 Musicians, writes PC Mag´s Angela Moscaritolo.
It took Twitter three years, two months and one day to reach the first billion tweets, and it took about 18 months for the first 500,000 users to sign up. The service still sees massive spikes from big ℠watercooler´ events like the Super Bowl, the Grammys and Super Tuesday, writes Robin Wauters for The Next Web.
Despite these impressive numbers, there are improvements that are regularly called for by the service, reports Daniel Roberts for CNN Money.
As of now, tweets are posted in real time and cannot be scheduled to post at a future time within the native application. Although there are third-party apps that can do this, to post a tweet at 3 in the morning, for example, requires the user to post it at that time.
“I find myself not following as many people simply because I worry about the things I care about being drowned out by FourSquare,” says Mark Johnson (@philosophygeek), CEO of Zite. “I´d like to see a smart stream; show me [in a separate or highlighted area] the tweets from people I care about who link to things I find interesting.”
Twitter did not comment on what features it might roll out in the next year, but it made quite a few upgrades in the past year, including new “Activity” and “@ Connect” tabs, enabling promoted tweets on mobile, and integrating images and video into search.
Perhaps Twitter will tackle many of these other lingering issues in time for its next birthday. Or maybe it will just embrace its dead-simple interface, which many users cite as its key strength.