Back in 2016, Twitter switched categories, from "Social Networking" to "News" on the App Store and Google Play, hoping to boost its visibility. It did take it to the top of the chart in more than one occasion.
Fours years later, #Twitter is having a record-breaking week, according to two well-respected app store intelligence companies, Apptopia and SensorTower. Although their numbers are not precisely the same, they both show the same overall picture: flocks of new and returning Twitter users — almost 1 million new users in a day!
And why that is? The world is amid civil unrest and protests for the death of #GeorgeFloyd and racial inequality. At the same time, #coronavirus has disrupted the life around the globe in its first wave and threatening with a second one. Twitter itself is in the news for standing up to Donald #Trump for sharing misleading information and/or promoting violence. While many people are outside protesting, many are stuck at home from the coronavirus threat. These all cause the need for immediacy in the news to be more than ever. And Twitter is serving that need.
Since the beginning of online social networking — web 2.0 phenomena before that — many of the "social" platforms have evolved to become more. Twitter has become a social news platform feeding the need for immediacy in the news; #Pinterest has become a social/visual search engine, etc.
These changes in the platforms, which many of us use daily, need to be reflected in the way we use them — personally or professionally — the same way it was considered in Twitter's change of categories.