News broke yesterday that traffic on Twitter is up 422% in the last 12 months, despite a year that introduced the fail whale into popular culture, and where service outages on other sites were routinely assessed as not being bad compared to Twitter.
Twitter should be the startup that has failed. The management of the company has been at very best grossly incompetent. Twitter was sold as a social utility, but it regularly failed to deliver, driving a new wave of microblogging services that aimed to take over where Twitter failed. For Twitter users, the question for a time wasn’t whether Twitter was down, but if it was up.
And yet, Twitter continues to thrive, even if it still seemingly doesn’t have a business plan, and any source of revenue.
While CEO Jack Dorsey deserves much of the credit, the two other founders Biz Stone and Evan Williams lay claim to much of the blame. Both worked with each other at Pyra Labs, and used that knowledge to build Twitter as a CMS platform, instead of a messaging service. And yet, who can dispute the numbers: Twitter has not only survived its darkest hour, a time where any other startup would have failed, Twitter has thrived.
Twitter has defied logic from the start, and that it thrives today defies logic again. Although I’m not religious, there can only be one conclusion: Evan Williams and Biz Stone are blessed. If anyone has a more logical conclusion, feel free to leave a comment :-)
(img credit Mai Le)