Friday, November 16, 2012

I blew it -- Twitter was cool on election night

In a recent post, I argued that The AP's interactive results map was better than Twitter, hangouts or a TV stream for watching the election returns online because the map was interactive, putting the user in charge.  I still like the map a lot and have not changed my mind about TV or the hangouts, but I sold Twitter short.

The problem was that I only followed one person's Twitter feed -- Andy Carvin.  I picked Andy because he practically invented the notion of reporting events via a live Twitter stream during the Arab Spring.

I said I found Andy's election coverage boring and often uninteresting to me, but I overlooked the fact that Twitter is social.  I should have followed many feeds, not just Andy's.  For example, if I had been following the candidate's feeds, I would have seen President Obama's victory tweet, the most re-tweeted post ever.

Twitter has published other statistics and memorable tweets.  It turns out they hit a rate of 327,452 tweets per minute, and did not crash.  (They were known for crashing under load in the past).