Tuesday, January 10th, 2012...10:45 am

Tebow time tweeting

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If you didn’t see it live, you’ve seen it — again and again…yes, and again! The Denver Broncos and Pittsburgh Steelers were locked in a tie in their Wildcard game. Only 11 seconds of overtime were needed for Tim Tebow to throw the longest overtime touchdown pass in what then became the shortest overtime playoff game in the history of the NFL. The fervor in the Denver stadium shook the Rockies and created the Internet tsunami that followed.

According to the USA Today, thumbs were typing at a rate of 9,420 tweets per second on Sunday night as they announced the victory. How much textual content flew through Twitter from this inspirational win?

While tweets cannot exceed 140 characters in length, their average length is 81.9 characters according to MediaFuturist. So, in one second, 771,498 characters zoomed through Twitter. From Wikipedia, we’ll take the average length of a word (in English) to be 5.1 characters. Note, here I make an assumption that 1) tweets are written in English and 2) even so, that tweets conform to the standard length of words in the English language. This would imply that 151,274 words were tweeted in one second on Twitter.

Can you conceptualize this number? Here are some word counts for the first three Harry Potter books:

  • Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone – 76,944 words
  • Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets – 85,141 words
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – 107,253 words

Note, in one second more words were tweeted about the Broncos win than any one of these Harry Potter books! In fact, if that rate of 9,420 tweets per second was kept for two seconds then more words were tweeted than all 3 of these books combined.

Twitter definitely got Tebow-ed on Sunday! Quite a finish and quite a Twitter sensation!


  •   Aaron Kollar
    January 11th, 2012 at 3:51 pm    Reply

    I love it…my favorite are the people that just tweet, “TEEEEEEEEEBBBOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWW!!!!!”

    Even better, he beat the Steelers, who are my sworn rival!

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