The Oban Blog

Japan and Korea lead New Year celebrations on Twitter

Twitter has had an electrifying start to 2013 in Japan and Korea, judging by the 33,388 tweets per second that were sent after the ball dropped at midnight, UTC+9 time. This statistic shows the enormous popularity that the site enjoys in East Asia, and the microblogging site was buzzing in time zones across the globe as shown in this infographic:




The second highest peak came when midnight hit UTC -5 – that’s New York/Bogota – and frantic partygoers registered 13,336 tweets per second, narrowly ahead of Bangkok/Jakarta (UTC +7) on 11,675. Elsewhere, figures show lethargy in London and Lisbon with UTC garnering 9,455 per second and UTC -8 (Los Angeles/Vancouver) trailing with a paltry 7,137 – perhaps those cities’ residents were too busy at the bar? According to, Twitter’s data is not measured by location so tweets sent as midnight fell in each time zone could have come from anywhere in the world. Therefore this data is not an iron-clad indicator of Twitter’s popularity in Japan and Korea, but it’s fascinating, fun and backs up some of what we already know.

The dawn of 2013 was a hot topic for users of Sina Weibo too. The Chinese microblogging site racked up 729,571 messages per minute, shattering the previous record of 481,207 set on Chinese New Year 2012 by a whopping 52%. According to, the record might not last longer than a month, when the Chinese are due to start their New Year celebrations again and records are once more expected to be smashed.

Although Sina can boast 400 million users – whose fingers are clearly working overtime if the previous statistic is anything to go by – it still faces consistent pressure from the almighty Tencent’s WeChat messaging service. It is predicted to reach 300 million users in the near future, but when the gargantuan number of dormant users on QQ is taken into account Sina would appear to still be ahead of the game behind the Great Firewall of China.

This article was written by social media professional Denisa Caciulan.