Obama tweet sets record
A second term and a Twitter record - with much to celebrate, a picture of an intimate embrace with his wife Michelle has become President Barack Obama’s most popular tweet ever with over half a million re-tweets and counting.
Just moments after his dream of a second term was realised, the president shared the celebratory tweet, accompanied by the words ‘Four more years’, with his 22.5 million followers, leading to speculation it could be the most shared tweet in the history of Twitter.
Prior to this, Mr Obama sent out words of thanks via the social networking site to those who voted for him, in what had to have been one of the first things he did on realising the election’s outcome.
It is appropriate the president took to Twitter so soon after his and Mitt Romney’s fates were sealed, as the website has been heavily utilised in both candidates’ campaigns.
A seismic shift in political debate and conversation was clearly marked yesterday as Twitter registered 31 million tweets - up from 1.8 million tweets on election day in 2008.
Mr Obama’s Twitter feed was active with advice to voters yesterday, with tweets including: “If you’re in line when the polls close, stay in line to vote. It could help make the difference.”
Tweets were also aimed at specific states, such as this one: “Nevada, pass it on: Polls close at 7pm PT. You can vote as long as you’re in line before then. #StayInLine”
Mr Romney’s Twitter feed included a similar series of tweets throughout yesterday, as the Republicans ensured their campaign used every resource available.
The defeated candidate has so far not tweeted since conceding, with his last tweet sending out a plea to people to use their vote:
“With your help, we will turn our country around and get America back on the path to prosperity. Please vote today.”
The candidates’ wives also made sure their voices were heard on Twitter as the first lady and Ann Romney encouraged their followers to go out and vote.
Michelle Obama tweeted: “If the polls have closed where you are, help call key states in the West...” While Mrs Romney tweeted: “We’re so close to the better future we deserve - we just need you to vote. Find your polling place:...” It was not just the candidates and their campaigners tweeting - with the website registering 31 million tweets a significant audience of people expressing their personal opinions was to be reached.
Adam Sharp, head of government, news and social innovation at Twitter, said: “As the results of the election were called by news organisations, the conversation on Twitter surged, hitting a peak of 327,452 tweets per minute.
“As international leaders tweeted diplomatic messages directly to BarackObama, Twitter also provided a glimpse into global politics," he said. “Since the campaign cycle unfolded on Twitter, it’s only fitting that for candidates nationwide, the journey also culminated here. After the votes were tallied, the candidates came to Twitter to share their final campaign tweets.”
Familiar faces took to their Twitter accounts to send their congratulations to Mr Obama with tweets from British prime minister David Cameron and Australian leader Julia Gillard.
Mr Cameron tweeted: “Warm congratulations to my friend BarackObama. Look forward to continuing to work together.”
Mr Gillard tweeted: “My sincere congratulations to President BarackObama on your re-election! JG”
Celebrities also chose Twitter to pass on their best wishes to Mr Obama as well as expressing their excitement at his re-election.
Singer Rihanna tweeted: “Put one in da air for the Prez!!!! Our dear Obama!”
Rapper Sean Combs, also known as P Diddy, posted a photograph of himself with Obama, and a caption expressing his delight: “Big O & I in 2004 when I predicted that he would be the first black President. The 2nd time around feels even better.”