Twitter is a reliably new social network which is growing to be the largest social network in the world second to Facebook. Twitter has 500,000,000 users and it lets you send a ‘tweet’ which can contain a message of up to 140 Characters. It also has facilities to let you share pictures and videos with the group of people that follow you.
Twitter was founded on 21 March 2006 by 4 people. It goes back to the podcasting service Odeo which lets you send podcasts to users. After this service began to fail the employees of this service were allowed to take part in a hackathon where they were allowed to spend a whole day working coming up with projects and new ideas. Jack Dorsey, Noah Glass, Evan Williams and Biz Stone had collectively come up with the idea of a service called Twittr. This idea began to grow and it was based around users sending a SMS to the website. Some of the Odeo users became addicted to the service and began racking up huge phone bills. Odeo had faith in this new service and agreed to pay the phone bills for these employees.
In October 2006, Odeo was failing due to iTunes announcing that their iPods would have a podcast service and this paired with Twittr slowly growing left Investors worried. Evan Williams, who was already rich due to selling blogging site Blogger to Google, offered to buy out the owners of Odeo by saying that he felt sorry for them and he wanted to help them out. These investors now say that Williams deceived them and that they were betrayed. As soon as Williams acquired Odeo he changed the name to Obvious Corporation. The name of Twittr was then changed to Twitter.
Many of the previous employees say Noah Glass was the person that was really pushing the idea of Twitter and was apparently working harder than anyone to get Twitter going. This is why it was a huge shock that Williams fired Noah Glass when he acquired Odeo, who owned Twitter. It is rumored that he did this because he really spotted the potential of Twitter and he wanted the success to himself. Noah Glass still has a Twitter profile in which he states in his biography “I started this” and according to many Odeo employees he is right.
Williams then took Twitter and broke it off from Odeo to make it its own company. It was at this point that Noah Glass received a share of the money for Twitter although the exact figure is not known. Glass still was not satisfied and said he felt betrayed and pushed out by his friends, referring to Williams. The other inventors Jack Dorsey and Biz Stone remained at the company although they have recently distanced themselves from it. Biz Stone is described as a co-founder of Twitter in which he would occasionally help the other 3 out but now he does not spend any time at the Twitter HQ. Dorsey still works at Twitter and he is also credited as a co-founder of Twitter.
As Twitter grew investors have come out to vent their frustrations at being pushed out of Odeo by Williams. Who can blame them though? Recent statistics value Twitter at $ 8.6 Billion and with the investors collectively receiving an estimated $ 25 Million you can see why they feel robbed. Twitters revenue is always increasing as it now offers advertising to businesses by making them a trending topic. The trending topics are meant to be about what most people are talking about but now some are edited to be there by Twitter. It is a great way for businesses to advertise with a potential reach of 500 million users. Twitter is still growing and is constantly breaking its own records. When Michael Jackson died Twitter broke own own record of number of tweets as it recorded 100,000 tweets per hour with the words Michael Jackson in them.
Many users find Twitter addictive and with a new recent layout it is competitive with Facebook. So over the next few years, competition between the two is likely to increase and this could cause a better social network or both could flop.