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Twitter’s Biggest Moments on Their 10th Anniversary

You guys! Twitter just turned ten. For ten years, Twitter has been giving us room to debate, create, meet, exclaim, and, most of all, tell our stories in real time. This was the first tweet, sent by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey.

I joined in 2008. This was my first tweet.

That one was closely followed by this ground-breaking tweet.

Pretty profound, huh? When I look at Jack’s and my own tweets I think: Wow, starting on a new social platform is awkward at first. You have no idea what you’re doing. When I expand that thought and bring it to the macro level, I think: Wow, when a social platform starts, it has no idea what it is going to become. 

That’s because the very nature of social media requires change and evolution. Social media platforms rely on–and cannot exist without–human beings sharing content. Human desires and needs are constantly shifting, depending on age, technology, lifestyle, and culture.

Here’s a quick timeline of some of Twitter’s changes in the first decade of its existence.

Twitter Timeline

Dorsey was named permanent CEO of Twitter on October 5, 2015.

Now that you have the cold, hard facts, let’s revisit some of my favorite Twitter moments in the past ten years, shall we?

The Epic Sandwich Tweet

‘Nuff said. Twitter is a vehicle for all modes of self-expression, including hunger. Check out how much engagement that tweet received, though…

The One with SXSW

sxsw twitter

SXSW 2007 was a major turning point for Twitter. As soon as Twitter won the Web Award, tweets circulated through the audience, catching the media’s attention in a big way.

The One That Made Hashtags a Thing

In August 2007, Chris Messina, a big open-source advocate, used the first-ever hashtag. To this day, Chris is credited with introducing the hashtag concept to Twitter.

NASA Gets on Board

In June 2008, NASA’s use of Twitter redefined how news reached the masses.

The Redefinition Continues

This redefinition continued and was cemented in 2009, during the famous Hudson River plane landing, and this now-famous tweet and twitpic:


Michael Jackson’s Death

When the King of Pop died in June 2009, celebrities and fans took to Twitter to express their grief, and set a tweets-per-second record at 493, crashing Twitter’s servers.

Legitimacy Is Cemented

When the Library of Congress wants to catalog you, you know you’re a big deal.

A Place for Sports Fans


A new tweets-per-second record was set when Japan beat Denmark in the World Cup. At 3,283 TPS, the new record absolutely crushed the former TPS record (Michael Jackson’s death: 493 TPS).

The Colbert Effect

Stephen Colbert had the most retweeted tweet of 2010, so co-founder Biz Stone bestowed the first-ever Golden Tweet award on The Colbert Report. 

Revolution Starts Here

Twitter became a communication platform for the Arab Spring Revolution.

Going International

The Boston Marathon Bombing

In 2013, the Boston Marathon bombing occurred. As news of the tragedy and the hunt for its perpetrators spread, Twitter showed its strength as a major journalism and news-spreading tool in moments of crisis.

Castle in the Sky FTW…Again

Twitter Castle in the SkyIn 2013, another screening of Castle in the Sky set another TPS record, with 143,199 tweets per second. This drastic increase is indicative of Twitter’s insane growth.

The One That Broke The Internet

Ellen DeGeneres and her 2014 Oscars selfie amassed more than 3 million retweets and became the most popular tweet of all time. 

The One with Drake

Drake debuted his Hotline Bling video on Apple Music and the Twitter applause was fierce.

Kanye…Just Kanye

What are your favorite Twitter moments in the past decade? Let us know on Twitter. 

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Lucy Hitz

I’m the Head of Marketing Communications here at Simply Measured, where I'm responsible for our content program, social media marketing, PR, and comarketing ventures. I love yoga, The X-Files, peaty scotch, hiking, and poetry. If I were a social media channel, I’d want to be Instagram, but I think I’m Twitter.

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