Happy Birthday To Twitter! And They're Handing Out Presents
March 21, 2014

Twitter Releases ‘First Tweets’ Tool In Honor Of Eighth Birthday

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online

Micro-blogging website Twitter is celebrating its eight birthday on Friday, but instead of asking for presents, it’s giving one to its users in the form of a new tool that allows them to look back at their first tweets – or those of their friends, family or favorite celebrities.

By visiting the website and/or using the hashtag ‘#FirstTweet’ people can enter the Twitter username of their choice to find out how they first became active on the popular social network. For example, Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey (@jack) launched his account by writing the first ever tweet – “just setting up my twttr” – on March 21, 2006 at 3:50 PM Eastern time, several months before the service officially launched to the public in July.

According to CNN’s Brandon Griggs, the original consonant-only version of the name was chosen because Dorsey and his colleagues were focusing on mobile and were hoping to secure use of the SMS shortcode 89877 (TWTTR). However, that shortcode was already owned by Teen People, and ultimately the decision was made to add a few vowels.

Since then, the 140-character or less service has gone public, and currently more than 500 million tweets are being sent daily by over 240 million active users, according to Rhiannon Williams of The Telegraph. In fact, a Pew Research Center survey revealed that 16 percent of all US adults use the service.

“Millions of prolific tweeters have made Twitter an exciting, fun and powerful place to connect with others,” Gabriel Stricker, Twitter's vice president of marketing and communications, told USA Today’s Brett Molina and Jon Swartz on Thursday. “But each of you had to start somewhere.”

“In 2006, people began to say a little something on Twitter through 140-character bursts of plain text,” he added, according to PC Mag’s Angela Moscaritolo. “Eight years later, our users have transformed Twitter into place where you can discover new ideas, make real human connections and express yourself freely.”

So how and when did the fine folks at your favorite space, health, science and technology news website enter the Twittersphere? Our first tweet came on February 28, 2009 at 1:51 PM Eastern time and was a link to an article on research discussing the potential evolutionary explanation for left-handedness.