Twitter celebrates five year anniversary, still going strong

Twitter celebrates five year anniversary, still going strong

Summary: When Twitter first came out, there were a lot of skeptics. No one was quite sure what to do with it. Nevertheless, five years later, it's still here and continuing to grow.

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When Twitter first came out, there were a lot of skeptics. No one was quite sure what to do with it. Nevertheless, five years later, it's still here and continuing to grow.

The San Francisco-based startup first launched on July 15th, 2006, and it was initially self-dubbed as "Twttr." (Thank goodness that Twitter execs abandoned the whole Web 2.0 trend of dropping vowels from the brand name to seem cool.)

It didn't really gain in popularity on the way to what we see today until about two years later. But now look at it. Everyone who is anyone is on Twitter these days. It's not just some random site where Ashton Kutcher posts 140-character messages about nothing. (Well, it still is, but it's a bit more than that now.)

To grasp just how big Twitter has gotten, check out the following stats from The Next Web:

While it took Twitter more than 16 months to reach the first 600,000 Twitter accounts. Yesterday, Twitter saw the same number – more than 600,000 signups in just one day.

Additionally, rebuffing Google's boasting about one billion items being published to Google+ in a day, Twitter touted that it sees 350 billion tweets posted each day. Now, to be fair, Google+ has only been up for a couple weeks and is still on invite-only mode, whereas anyone can sign up for as many Twitter accounts as they want. I bet we can expect to see comparable numbers from Google within the year.

However, one of the questions hanging in the minds of most tech followers for a considerable time: How will this thing make any money?

By implementing advertising and sponsored Tweets, Twitter finally a found a way to actually be worth something beyond an alternative messaging service and become a major player in the tech world. Although it hasn't gone public yet, and likely won't for the immediate future, it's gotten to the point where Twitter's estimated value is $7 billion. It's also doing its best to consolidate its empire by eliminating support for third-party platform clients, buying out some of the better ones (see: TweetDeck), and it has surpassed one million registered applications for gaming, analytics and more.

When the President of the United States hosts a town hall event solely on Twitter, you know something is big.  As much as many tech insiders might argue that Google+ (or whatever else comes along next) are Twitter-killers, it's almost laughable.

Of course, Twitter could look drastically different five years from now. Yet, for the moment, Twitter isn't going anywhere but up.

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2 comments
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  • I still don't get it, but then again...

    Although from an anthropological perspective, I can understand the psychological-social phenomenon of gossip.
    There exists a variable need among various people for gossip. (No judgment upon actual necessity for gossip. Since it evolved as a human behavior, it must be a useful activity in some way.)
    Technology has found a niche to fulfill a social need within human behavior. From a utilitarian perspective, it is hard to justify. But human existence is undeniably, a social phenomenon, and fortunately, not a utilitarian one.
    voltrarian
  • RE: Twitter celebrates five year anniversary, still going strong

    This is really cool, I've seen too many articles lately about how Google+ would certainly cause the downfall of Twitter, which I believe is possible but highly unlikely. If Twitter implements their new business strategy and becomes even more ad friendly, I can see them increasing revenue by a huge margin.
    I actually wrote an article about how this could play out over the next year, check it out!
    http://chitika.com/blog/2011/07/08/twitter-to-become-more-ad-friendly/
    rycav91