The True Success of Twitter – [DIGC202]


As an avid lover of the social media platform Twitter my fascination stems from the social nature of the media platform. For those of you who unaware or blatantly ignoring the social media, Twitter is an online social media platform that allows users to aggregate, discuss and share news/entertainment and basically any content through a user name identity, using 140 characters or less. From posting tweets about your thoughts on your latest album purchase, to discovering vital information and statistics about the recent government elections, Twitter has all bases covered.
The success of the platform lies in how content is aggregated and filtered by the actions of its audience. Although each separate tweet may seem irrelevant to the discussion, Johnson (Time, 2009) believes that Injecting Twitter into the conversation fundamentally changed the rules of engagement. Users are given the power of social networks, live searching and link sharing which enables the processing of information and ideas at a much faster rate than that of Google’s searching abilities. As technologies continue to push the boundaries of social interaction, the question raised by convergence experts is “Will Twitter Survive?”

With the company set to become a public offering in the near future, many are asking how much growth and space does the platform have to offer? Looking back at the history of the platform may just provide the answer to this question.

From the early onset of the birth of Twitter users have been shaping and redefining the platforms role in society. From creating conversations by using the ‘@’ symbol throughout tweets, to aggregating discussion by using hash-tags (#) user involvement and creativity has spawned the dynamic platform we all use today.
Industry experts believe that the future success of Twitter lies within the advertising revenue it can produce as it moves from a niche to mainstream media outlet. With over 250 million active users, Twitter has fast become one of the world’s leading data collectors. Using the social media business model (you’re not the customer, you’re the product) the platform has essentially turned the art of socialising online into a multi billion dollar advertising aggregation machine.

As with many social media platforms the success of the product isn’t measured by the opportunities of social interaction, it measured on power, wealth and greed.
As powerful as social media platforms are in destabilising corrupt governments and changing political landscapes it seems as though the only true measure of the success and future of social media lies within how much information they can extract from our day-to-day conversations. An interesting thought to reflect on next time you are browsing your Twitter feed.



Johnson, S. (2009). How Twitter Will Change the Way We Live, Moodle Database, accessed 18th September 2013,

Luke Macdonald
2nd Year Media & Communication & Commerce Student @UOW
Majoring in Digital Communication & Marketing



4 thoughts on “The True Success of Twitter – [DIGC202]

  1. Its funny you mention the future to be in advertising revenue. Seeing I interact with your tweets regularly, most days of the week I see a promoted tweet from “ASOS” in my feed which also states you follow it. That example aside, I don’t see (or notice) too much more advertising. There is so much more space within Twitter feeds that could be utilised for ads. Im not saying this is what I want. Youtube is really annoying me lately. If I see that Robin Thicke song promoted at the start of a video I’m trying to watch again I may put my fist through the screen. I guess it all comes down to the fact that people aren’t looking around or interacting with much physical print media. Its only logical that advertisement dominates the one place the majority of the western world looks at so many times a day. What might be the end of Twitter is if one day the promoted tweets outnumber the tweets you actually want to interact with.

  2. First of all, I enjoyed your insight about Twitter growing exponentially as an advertising platform, offering marketing opportunities. However, your conclusion about destabilising corrupt governments does seem a little controversial to me. As positive as Twitter was in the removal of the Gaddafi’s regime, Twitter was also a medium of anarchy used by protestors and rioters to contact each other in the London riots.

  3. I really enjoyed the way in which you used Twitter as an example of a new business model for advertising etc. I never really thought of it that way! I think Twitter’s success lies in the revolutionary use of the hashtag and @ symbol. They allow for anyone to beocome integral parts of a global discussion, of many varying issues, some with great importance to aspects of society like politics. I think this is why Twitter is increasingly becoming more popular – according to eBusiness Knowledge base (, Twitter is second only to Facebook, although I think in the future Twitter will become the most popular due to the way in which it allows for users to discuss issues with people across the globe, and with people who may not be present in their social circle, on the contrary to the exclusive nature of Facebook and ‘friends’.

  4. While I find it interesting how Twitter is one of the world’s leading data collectors, it does pain me to think of all the data they are picking up from all those 12 year olds fan-girling over One Direction – data collection and marketing would work perfectly in an ideal world where everyone on Twitter is sharing ideas and news. That was my first thought, haha! I found this post great, and I think the only real answer to ‘Will Twitter Survive?’ is ‘well, yes’ because there is so much this platform can offer.

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