What Are We Tweeting About?


This info is from two months worth of randomly selected tweets. The total was 3 million. The number of tweets sent a second, compared to other countries constitutes the size of each countries bubble. The USA, tweets the most with 52% of all tweets. Brazil came in second with 17% of all tweets. The UK comes in third followed closely by Indonesia, with 11% and 9% respectively. The rest of the countries all have less than 5% of the tweets, and we only included the top 18 countries (with the next two unnamed also shown).

What are we tweeting about?

The most tweeted thing ever on twitter was Beyonce announcing her pregnancy. This created an unprecedented 8,900 tweets a second after the 2011 VMA’s. This may well have caused twitter’s servers to crash, if they had not learnt from the previous record – on June 25th 2009, 100,000 tweets an hour were posted to include the word “Michael Jackson” after he died. The average tweets per hour at this time was 12,000. This caused the servers to all crash at once, and very nearly shut down the site for good, had they not had back up servers. Twitter had only 70 servers then. 

Twitter has shown signs of explosive growth if you consider the sheer number of tweets that are posted today. When the site opened in 2006 as twttr (the domain twitter.com was already taken by a bird enthusiast) it had only a single tweet, posted by the developers. In 2012 340 million tweets are posted every day. Twitter receives 55 million visits a month, and is one if the top ten ranking websites (according to alexa.com).

For the purpose of our experiment, Retweets were ignored, and so was spam. 

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