Usama bin Laden's Death Sets New Record on Twitter

Published May 02, 2011

| TVGuide

 

The news heard 'round the world — the death of 9/11 mastermind Usama bin Laden — was also heard loudly on Twitter, setting a new record for the social media site.

Twitter users posted messages at an average rate of 3,440 tweets per second, according to the company's public relations news feed.

U.S. military operation kills 9/11 mastermind Usama bin Laden, President Obama announces

"Last night saw the highest sustained rate of tweets ever," the company wrote about the period from 10:45 p.m. - 2:20 a.m. ET. The peak tweeting time came at 11 p.m. ET when there were 5,106 tweets per second.

However, it is unclear what other highly tweeted events were beat out for this new record made Sunday night. The fastest rate of tweeting ever happened on New Year's Eve in Japan when users posted 6,939 tweets per second, but it was only for the first four seconds after the New Year, not the sustained period of tweeting seen with bin Laden's death.

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Prior to President Barack Obama's official address at approximately 11:35 p.m. ET, many claim that Twitter helped break the news of bin Laden's death Sunday. Keith Urbahn, the chief of staff for former U.S. Defense Department Secretary Donald Rumsfield,  tweeted at least an hour before the President made his announcement. "So I'm told by a reputable person they have killed Usama Bin Laden," he wrote.

The attack on bin Laden was also, unknowingly, live-tweeted by 33-year-old IT consultant Sohaib Athar, who lives in Abbottabad, where bin Laden's compound was located. "A huge window shaking bang here in Abbottabad Cantt. I hope it's not the start of something nasty," he wrote early on May 1.

#Usama was still trending on Twitter as of late Monday evening.


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