February 2010



Twitter is one of the most popular social networking sites. Twitter can be used to communicate with your friends, family, and people you admire or are interested in. Another way people use Twitter is to keep in touch with companies or brands that they like, such as Johnny Rockets, PF Chang's, Nordstrom, Louis Vuitton, etc. Twitter is used in a number of ways by retailers: getting news out to their followers, promoting special “Twitter only” offers to their customers, disseminating fashion tips, and announcing unique store events.

Here are a few interesting Twitter facts:

  • The average Twitter user has 126 followers.
  • Only 20% of the Twitter traffic comes through the website. Third-party software on smart phones and computers contributes the rest.
  • In January 2009, 735,000 unique visitors accessed Twitter via their mobile device.
  • The average unique visitor goes to Twitter 14 times during the month.
  • In February 2009, adults ages 35-49 had the largest representation on Twitter, with almost 3 million unique visitors from this age group (almost 42% of the entire audience)

On a serious note, during the controversial Iranian elections held in June 2009, the government shut down YouTube and the Internet; however, they neglected to include Twitter, and that opened up the possibility for information to get to the outside world. The protests were literally televised. All of this is a testament to the power of social media in general, something we are just starting to get our head around. In a similar fashion , the Twitter home page will always have what they call trending topics where people can chime in on the top issues of the moment. The key thing I have taken away from my Twitter experience is the amazing speed in which information can now travel, for better or worse. Social media is something we are all coming to use in our everyday life, and Twitter is at the center of the storm.

Reviewer: Monika Earle, FIDM Library Staff Member