As America and Obama bask in a the light of a job well done with Osama, Twitter is basking as well. The online discussions were so intense on Sunday night that Twitter managed to set a new record.
Record for Twitter
The company’s official public relations news feed recounts that, during the President’s speech, Twitter users were posting message at an average rate of 3,440 tweets per second. At the absolute peak of this online conversation, the company said that there were 5,106 tweets happening per second.Many people first heard about the news of Osama’s death from Twitter and other social networking outlets. Alerts went off on iPads. Some people even claim that Twitter was the one that originally broke the story.
White House Tweets
The official White House tweet came at 9:30 pm ET that Obama would be making a presidential address one hour later. Certainly, by that time Twitter was already abuzz with speculation and information. The president, in his televised address, then said, “Tonight I can report to the American people and to the world that the United States has conducted an operation that has killed Osama bin Laden, the leader of al Qaeda.”The tweeting during Obama’s address made this one of the highest-traffic conversations in Twitter’s history.
The Face of Social Media
Of course, the media sources are all commenting on how quickly news spreads today with the availability of social networking sites, and particularly with Twitter. On the tech blog Silicon Alley Insider, Matt Rosoff wrote, “Twitter was faster, more accurate, and more entertaining than any other news source out there. Which means the next time my dad asks me why anybody would use Twitter, I’ll finally have a good response.”Certainly, Osama bin Laden’s demise will go down in history. It’s a victory for the soldiers fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq, a victory for the American people, a victory for those who lost their lives on September 11th and for those who remember them; for many, it’s also a fascinating victory for social media and an interesting look at how we get our news in the ever-changing electronic age.