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TWITTER: THE DARK SIDE
Welcome to the Real-Time World


Internet growth even before advent of Social Networking sites like Twitter has been no less than mind boggling. In January 1993 there have been 1,313,000 hosts on the Internet That number rose to 72,398,092 on January 1, 2000 only to reach, in January of 2009, the number of hosts as 625,226,456 which represents a growth of 47,600 % in less than 20 years.

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Twitter: The Dark Side - Welcome to the Real-Time World

Human Society Is, Well, a Social Medium

Internet growth even before advent of Social Networking sites like Twitter has been no less than mind boggling. In January 1993 there have been 1,313,000 hosts on the Internet. (An Internet host is a machine connected to the Internet that has an Internet Protocol address (IP address). An IP address is used to uniquely identify every host on the Internet) That number rose to 72,398,092 on January 1, 2000 only to reach, in January of 2009, the number of hosts as 625,226,456. (a growth of 47,600 % in less than 20 years). That data originated with Matthew Gray of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and expanded through the Internet Systems Consortium: https://www.isc.org/.


But then the Social Networking sites have exploded in a barrage of bursts as supernovas. The rest is, as they say, a history. The graph below shows some of the said history:

Advent of Social Networking Sites

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Graph © 2007 Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication

( Above Graph is used without the explicit permission of its authors and it falls under a “fair use of a copyrighted work” for the purpose of this research as defined in the §107. of the Chapter 1 of the Title 17 of the U.S. Code.)

 

The First Tweet?

“Some days, before I go to bed, I think about my day, and how it meshed with my life, and I write a little about what learned me.” – 128 characters written by Justin Hall in January of 1994 might have beaten Cosmo Kramer for the honor of being a first Tweet before Twitter. Hall started writing an online journal with dated daily entries, linking each post through an index page that year and blogging was born.


In August of 1999, Pyra Labs (http://www.pyra.com/ still exists and is, in a way, quite funny to see.), today owned by Google launches the free Blogger blogging service that for the first time provided an easy to use set of tools for anyone to set up a blog. The rest is, again, a well-recorded history; some 133,000,000 blogs have been created until a whole new set of collective toys have emerged one of whose indisputable stars is YouTube (YouTube was bought out for the $1.65 Billion so if you don’t mind dying of jealousy check out this piece of history - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jNQXAC9IVRw - the very first YouTube video, featuring Jawed Karim, one of YouTube’s three founders).

 

Since 2006 YouTube, yet another Social Networking website whose purpose is to enable you to “share your videos with friends, family, and the world”, serves 100,000,000 videos a day. Owned yet again by ubiquitous Google, YouTube does not provide new data so its anyone’s guess how many videos they show daily but according to Ryan Junee, Product Manager at YouTube, an astonishing 20 hours of video content are uploaded to the service every single minute, or more than 30 minutes of film every second. According to some calculations, YouTube will serve 75 billion video streams to 375 million unique visitors in 2009.


Facebook and MySpace boast 250,000,000 and 125,000,000 active users respectively and Twitter is growing by leaps and bounds so it is crystal clear that Social Networking sites have taken over the Internet and have become the most important part of it.


In fact, Social Networking, according to the recent Nielsen Online Study show that by the end of 2008, social networking had overtaken email in terms of worldwide reach. 66.8% of Internet users across the globe accessed “member communities” last year, compared to 65.1% for email. Now a new shining star of the Social Networking sphere is our subject, Twitter.

Should Twitter, while still in its infancy getting “only” a new $100million dollars investment on September 24, 2009 already be learning from MySpace that was purchased during a pre -- “trillions as a norm” -- era, in 2003, by Rupert Murdoch for $580million.

MySpace was the King of the Social Networking, but starting in November of 2008 and accelerating in early 2009 its glitter darkened: Facebook is now well over twice the size of MySpace ... and it was less than a year ago that they were the same size." So while Twitter is catching up, for sure, in some garage bound incubator its replacement is trying its mental muscules.

 

PART IV: Businesses Emerge

 



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