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Are there more Facebook status updates or Twitter tweets? September 4, 2009

Posted by jeremyliew in facebook, twitter.

Facebook says that more than 30m people update their status at least once per day. So there are at least 30m status updates a day, and likely some multiple of that – perhaps in the order of 45-60m status updates.

Tweespeed suggests that there are around 1m tweets per hour on average over the last week, so that is around 24m tweets per day. This is roughly in line with the 210 tweets per second that twitpocalypse is estimating in their countdown, which comes out to about 18m tweets per day. But note that these rates are accelerating fast.

Facebook still leads by 2-3x.

But there is a difference in the velocity of posting (tweeting or updating status) between the two user bases. A recent Harvard Business Review post notes that the mean number of tweets per day per user is 0.37.

This includes inactive users in the denominator so the ratio of tweets per active user is going to be higher. Facebook notes 250m active users and 30m people who update their status at least once per day. Assuming 45-60m status updates in total, that is a ratio of roughly 0.18-0.24 posts per active user. Twitter users show a higher rate of posting. So the number of tweets may surpass the number of status updates over the next 12 months if Twitter continues to grow at its historical rate.

Note that Facebook’s feed is full of events other than status updates, so Facebook will likely continue to have many more feed events than there are tweets for a long time to come.

[Thanks to the guys at Adthrow for sharing this analysis with me]


1. Nik - September 8, 2009

One reason that there may be higher Tweets/person could be the number of BOTs and RSS updates to Twitter accounts. I would guess that in general Facebook have a higher proportion of status updates by real/live/humans than Twitter

2. Scott Hoffman - December 8, 2009

Interesting data. I also wonder about the reasons – how many twitter people feed their status updates into Facebook? do you think that would be double counted?

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