Bin Laden Death Results in Twitter Tweet Record

Dennis Faas's picture

The recently announced death of Al Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden was big news around the world.

Across the United States, people poured into the streets to celebrate. One of the more memorable moments came in a game between the New York Mets and Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday night, where fans greeted the news with an impromptu chant of "U-S-A!", "U-S-A!"

But the most fervent activity might have been in the digital world, where Twitter members set a new record by Tweeting an average of over 3,000 times per second. (Source:

Sustained Rate of Tweets a Record

"[Sunday] night saw the highest sustained rate of tweets ever," Twitter representatives said in a statement. "From 10:45 p.m. - 2:20 a.m. ET, there was an average of 3,000 tweets per second."

In fact, the number was closer to 3,440 during President Barack Obama's late-night announcement that a unit of the U.S. Special Forces had found and eliminated Bin Laden in Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan. By the time Obama's speech concluded, Twitter Tweets were occurring over 5,100 times per second.

Many people have reported hearing the news via Twitter or Facebook, where status updates were equally ferocious.

Where Were You?

CNN took a look at some of its Twitter followers and relayed where they were when the news of Bin Laden's death first reached them.

"I heard about it via twitter while in the middle of doing my podcast about video games -- needless to say it derailed the PSN (PlayStation Network) talk," said one Twitter user, whose sentiment will surely be appreciated by Sony.

"I was going through airport security in LAS and was told by a TSA agent," said a second Twitter user. "I got on Twitter to confirm, during Obama's speech." (Source:

Of course, most people did note that neither Facebook nor Twitter represented the last stop for Bin Laden news. Most sought out more information on the subject from news sources like the New York Times, CNN, or BBC News.

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