Ronnie05's Blog

“Twitter”ing away (part II)

Posted in Social context, media and advertising by Manas Ganguly on March 19, 2009

On January 17th,2009, Twitter beat Digg as the most popular pastime for people who like to update their thoughts and activities and voyeurs who enjoyed reading about people’s lives. The surge in volumes came when the crash of US airways flight 1549 was tweeted by Janis Krums. Krum became a celebrity, Tweeter a phenomenon and the site visit hits one of the largest for any events around the world. It also peaked during President Obama’s swearing in on January 20th, 2009. Not only is it now associated with micro blogging but there are strong refernces to its use as a tool for citizen journalism and the emergence of  crowdsourcing news and updates.


The increase in Twitter’s base of followers/users/Tweeters has gained maximum audience from the 25-34 group. The Numbers in other age brackets have also seen huge numerical increases, though the percentage contributions have definitely tilted towards the younger lot. See the chart below.


Twitter’s age distribution pattern in heavy towards the 25-34 age group. For Digg, it is mostly uniform across the age bands.


Also relevant are the clickstream data according to which, Digg relies heavily on Search sites such as Google for traffic. (The absolute number of Searches for Twitter is still higher than Digg). On the other hand Twitter recieves higher share of traffic from social networks. This is mostly due sto the applications which integrate these sites. For instance, Twitter application has 104,000 users on Facebook, where status updates can be linked to Twitter! 

twitter-upstream-1-17twitter-search-wms-1-17One dampener to these statistics is the fact that Twitter’s traffic is routed through a variety of sources. In fact 44% of its traffic are from sources which are not web based. This includes the text message, Instant message, RSS and Twitterific applications.  A significant amount of Twitter activity takes place through mobile phones, which is not measured and which could impact the Twitter statistics in a northward fashion. So the web based numbers actually tell a part of the story, the whole of which can only be guessimated by the buzz around Twitter during the Barack Obama’s  Presidential Campaigns and Swearing in.

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