It was exactly one decade ago that Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey posted the world’s first tweet, and now there’s close to half a billion tweets being posted each day. However, there are a few problems that have plagued Twitter over the last ten years that continue to plague it to this day, such as the fact that even though it’s an incredibly important tool for breaking news and live event coverage, the size of its userbase doesn’t reflect that importance. Dorsey, who’s currently serving as the company’s CEO, claims that this is because the majority of Twitter’s users aren’t registered with the service, otherwise its userbase would be close to a billion.
When I was in high school I discovered that a well-timed quip or joke in the classroom could make an entire class – even the teacher – laugh or at least react. It was a kind of skill, the ability to think on my feet and the distance from my brain to my mouth being maybe a millisecond shorter than those around me. It would be 25 years before I connected this relatively minor skill with the perfect digital platform: Twitter. Twitter and I didn’t see eye-to-eye in the early going. I honestly did not even hear about it until almost a year after Jack Dorsey’s famous first tweet. In my defense much of the world was unaware of Twitter until it made its big splash at South by Southwest Interactive in March 2007. That year, it won the Web award. At that time, Twitter didn’t even have a proper mobile app, so news that it won was delivered to everyone via Twitter SMS notifications. As a long-time member of the tech media, I was always on the look-out for the hot new thing. I can’t tell you how many virtual social platforms I signed up for in the mid-90’s and how many social platforms I tried in the early oughts (yes, I was on Friendster) before I found Twitter. If you’ve read my old columns, you know that not only did I not get Twitter. I even predicted its early demise.