This is What’s Trending Today…
On Monday, Twitter turned 10.
The 140-character messaging service launched on March 21, 2006. Since then, Twitter has become a global communication tool, with 320 million users.
It all began with a simple tweet from Twitter founder Jack Dorsey. On the afternoon of March 21, 2006, he posted, “just setting up my twttr.”
Some of the biggest news events in the past 10 years broke first on Twitter.
The first report of the U.S. raid that killed Osama Bin Laden came from a Pakistani man’s tweet. And the first photo of an American airplane that landed in New York’s Hudson River was posted on Twitter.
The pro-democracy Arab Spring protests played out and spread on Twitter. And the #BlackLivesMatter movement gained strength through the social media site.
Today, Twitter users are showing their gratitude for the past 10 years with the hashtag #LoveTwitter.
The idea for a hashtag came more than a year after Twitter’s creation. On August 23, 2007, Chris Messina suggested the idea of using the pound (#) symbol to organize tweets.
Twitter started using the hashtag feature in 2009.
The hashtag made twitter a more powerful platform for activists and a popular tool for breaking news.
The most commonly used hashtag is #FF, which stands for Follow Fridays. Twitter user Micah Baldwin proposed #FF in a tweet back in January of 2009.
The idea of a retweet function also came from a Twitter user. Eric Rice posted the world’s “first” retweet on April 17, 2007.
Twitter users soon began copying tweets with an “RT” at the beginning of the post. Retweeting became a feature on Twitter more than two years later, in November 2009.
The most retweeted post of the past 10 years is comedian Ellen DeGeneres’ #OscarSelfie. DeGeneres took the famous selfie during the 2014 Academy Awards. It received more than 2 million retweets.
Twitter may need some more great ideas from its users to survive the next 10 years. Observers are questioning the company’s future. Despite its worldwide popularity, Twitter has yet to find a way to make money. It has also been criticized for being slow to control hate speech.
And for the first time ever, the number of Twitter users went down during the last quarter. The company reported it lost 2 million users during the last months of 2015.
The problems led Twitter’s founder, Jack Dorsey, to return to the company.
Last year, the company said it was considering removing Twitter’s famous 140-character limit.
But Dorsey said earlier this month that the limit would remain.
And that’s What’s Trending Today.
Do you use Twitter? What do you like best about it? What changes would you make to the site? Let us know in the Comments section!
Words in This Story
movement - n. a series of organized activities in which many people work together to do or achieve something
gratitude - n. a feeling of appreciation or thanks
propose - v. to suggest something to a person or group of people to consider
quarter - n. one of four divisions of a year : a period of three months