POPSUGAR Celebrity

The Anatomy of Ellen's Epic, Record-Breaking Tweet

Mar 5 2014 - 11:31am

Ellen DeGeneres [1] hosted the Oscars, broke Twitter [2], and had pizza delivered [3] all in one night. Job well done, Ellen.

The host's epic celeb selfie featuring Jennifer Lawrence [4], Bradley Cooper [5], Brad Pitt [6], Angelina Jolie [7], and others spread like wildfire during the ceremony. The pic became the most retweeted in history, and today, Twitter broke down exactly how many people bore witness [8] to this record-/web-breaking tweet.

Source: Getty / Kevin Winter [9]

While Oscars-related tweets were viewed over 3.3 billion times worldwide, Ellen's tweet alone was seen in total over 32.8 million times across the web! By 8 a.m. PST on Monday, March 3, 2.4 million people had retweeted Ellen's tweet, 13,711 sites (like ours [10]) embedded it, and 8.1 million different users saw the tweet directly from their timelines on Twitter.com, the Twitter mobile, and desktop apps.


The graphic shows how quickly a single tweet can go viral and also underlines the role the microblogging service plays during live television events. During these events, Twitter becomes a social epicenter. When there's a big game on, the season finale of a hit show is playing, or a big award ceremony like the Oscars or the Grammys is airing, Twitter transforms into a virtual watercooler.

It's indicative of a new trend: bringing a second screen into the viewing experience. Sure, some viewers are moving away from live television and toward on-demand services like Netflix. But social platforms such as Twitter are turning TV into another medium entirely. Social media lets lots of people share a common experience, and as this graph shows, a single post can be seen by millions.

Source: Twitter [11]

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