Throughout the 16 days of the London Olympics, roughly 150 million tweets were sent. That is an astronomical number for slightly over a two-week stretch. In fact, so many users were on Twitter at the start of the Olympics that the network even crashed for a short period. No single person was the topic of discussion in more of those 150 million tweets than Usain Bolt.
According to Reuters, Bolt was mentioned in 80,000 tweets per minute during his 200-meter race and 74,000 during his 100-meter race. Andy Murray finished second with 57,000 tweets per minute as he was going for gold against Roger Federer in men’s singles tennis.
Bolt was among nine Olympians who were mentioned more than 1 million times during the Games. Some of the other notable athletes who hit the million mark were Michael Phelps, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Tom Daley and Gabby Douglas. Bolt’s mentions were probably helped by people like this NFL running back and this college quarterback, who claimed they could beat him in a race.
With Twitter at the peak of its popularity, it’s safe to say the social networking tool played a massive role in the buzz surrounding the 2012 Olympics. Between the London Eye serving as a massive mood ring based on tweets and stars like Michael Phelps posting pictures to complain about their accessories, it’s tough to remember what Olympic life was like before Twitter came along.
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