It’s exactly ten years ago today since the microblogging platform Twitter was launched upon the world by a small team in a San Francisco tech startup, and since then it’s evolved into one of the biggest social media networks with more than 300 million active users around the world. Twitter have marked the occasion by posting a two-and-a-half minute advert which reiterates the unique qualities it offers to its users, as well as thanking them for helping it reach its current status.
The video highlights one of Twitter’s main strengths, which is its role as a platform for breaking news stories. From the World Cup to the Oscars to the 2011 Japanese tsunami to the death of Nelson Mandela, Twitter has provided a place for people to find out about the major news stories of the past decade as they are happening. Twitter has also played a role in activism and campaigns for change, used as a place for discussion and the sharing of information, while providing leaders with a useful resource to gauge public opinion on political matters such as the legalisation of gay marriage and a place where users can directly address influential people by tweeting at them.
This democratic quality is one of the most appealing features of the platform, as well as the 140 character limit, which forces users to be succinct and creative in their content. Despite recent speculation that this was going to change to allow longer content, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has stated that the limit will be staying.
Of course, Twitter has also been valuable for businesses around the world, helping to level the playing field between smaller businesses and major companies. With informative, interesting and well crafted tweets, a business can capture the imaginations of its audience and experience increased success. As we head into the future, it seems clear that Twitter can still have an important role to play in helping people to communicate and get involved, and this will continue to be valuable for businesses who want to explore the many opportunities offered by social media.