On this day in 2006, Jack Dorsey sent out a message from a relatively unknown new social network called “twittr”. Nine years later, Twitter has grown to become one of the top social media in the world and the only notable competitor to Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook.

According to the latest stats from the company, Twitter has 288 million active users, 500 million Tweets are sent per day and 77% of user accounts are outside the US. Here’s a look back at eight other stand out moment and tweets that made history over the years locally and around the world.

The day the hashtag was born

The idea of a hashtag was first proposed by former Google employee Chris Messina in 2007 and today, it’s used across many other social networks such as Intsagram and Facebook as a way for users to engage on a specfic topic and find similar posts.  

The tweet that broke the record for most retweets

Not only did US president Barack Obama make history in politics as the first black American president, he also broke the record for most retweeted tweet after posting a photo of himself hugging his wife Michelle when he won his second term in office.

And the star-studded selfie that surpassed the Obama record

Obama held that record for about two years until comedienne Ellen Degeneres’s star-studded Oscar selfie knocked it off the top spot with more than double the number of retweets.  

 Oscar Trial mania

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South Africans were engrossed in the Oscar Pistorius trial for a good seven months as two of the country’s top lawyers went head to head in defence and prosecution of the fallen sport hero. Hahstags #Oscar, #OscarTrial and #OscarPistorius trended world wide and even overshadowed big events such as the South African national elections as media and ordinary citizens watch from home, work, listened on radio and read news about it.

The first Vine tweeted from space

“That’s one small video for man and one giant leap for the internet.” Although that’s not actually what American astronaut Reid Wiseman said when he tweeted a Vine he took of the earth orbiting the sun from the International Space Station, it would’ve been cool in cheesy cliché kind of way. Wiseman frequently posts tweets and breathtaking photos of the view of earth from space, but this particular Vine became thee first to be tweeted from beyond our planet.

The live-tweeting of Osama Bin Laden’s capture and subsequent killing

Known for being “America’s most wanted man in history”, 9/11 mastermind Osama Bin Laden was finally tracked down and captured in a raid by the government in Pakistan in 2011. Unbeknownst to Sohaib Athar who inadvertently live-tweeted it as it happened.

 First tweet about Hudson river plane landing

Janis Krums happened to be on a ferry when Captain Chesley Burnett “Sully” Sullenberger safely landed a plane full of passengers in the Hudson River in 2009. Krums was the first to officially break the news on social media via a tweet with a photo of the plane.  

The most tweeted real-time event on Twitter

South Africa may have made history as the first African country to host the FIFA World Cup, but it’s 2014 tournament in Brazil that made a huge mark on social media. The Chile vs Brazil match on the 27th June  16.4 million tweets, making it the most tweeted real-time event on the social network.  

[Image – CC by Flickr kopp0041]