Twitter Turns 6: What Next?

  on March 22 2012 1:42 PM

On Wednesday, March 21, Twitter celebrated its sixth anniversary. A company announcement on its blog reports more than 140 million active users who send roughly 340 million tweets each day. Just two months ago, in January, Twitter said 250 million tweets are being sent out every day, which means a whopping increase of 36 percent in such a short time.

Without you, of course, there wouldn't be a Twitter, reads the company's blog post. We mark our sixth birthday with you in mind, and celebrate your myriad ways of engaging, enjoying, and emoting on our platform.

Twitter Breaks Barriers

During the past decade, social media has gained considerable ground and has become a part of our daily lives, but Twitter seems to have done more than that. Twitter hasn't just left a mark. Twitter has changed the way we view virtual life and what we think of traditional means of interacting with one another, said Brad Shimmin, an analyst at Current Analysis. Before Twitter there was a large distance between someone writing news and someone reading news. The people who are being interviewed and were making the news were separated from the consumer by the media.

News Straight from the Source

If we come to think of it, there's a whole lot of truth to this statement. While in the past the only way you could get access to celebrities, businessmen, athletes, government officials or other prominent figures was through media stories, now you can simply follow the people you're interested in and get the scoop straight from the source. Thanks to Twitter, now it is possible to bypass traditional media coverage and learn more about high-profile public figures straight from their tweets.

Twitter has come along and disintermediated the situation so you don't have to really look at media outlets as your only source of contact with the people making news, added Shimmin.

Back in September, Twitter announced it had reached 100 million active users, which included 82 percent of the U.S. House and 85 percent of the Senate, 75 percent of the NBA's players, 50 percent of the NFL, 87 percent of the Billboard Top 100 Musicians, and 93 percent of the top Food Network chefs.

Twitter Has Big Plans, but Not Ready to Go Public

Now, Twitter is looking to grow further and move beyond its current status, aiming to become an even greater business. In a deliberate effort to expand its suite of advertising products, the company is now offering advertisers more ways to target Twitterers, especially on mobile platforms, and has increased the amount of ad content users see on Web and mobile.

Back in January, CEO Dick Costolo said Twitter is planning to be around for decades to come, however it doesn't have any immediate plans to go public. We are going to be really patient about the way we build the business, said Costolo. We are trying to build a decades-long, lasting business.

(reported by Alexandra Burlacu, edited by Surojit Chatterjee)

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