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Twitter turns 10: the most popular tweet, emoji, and users of all time

It’s been ten years since Twitter started life as a fledgling social network with dreams of allowing everyone to instantly share their random musings. Since then the platform has added images, videos, emoji, and most recently GIFs, in an effort to help users express themselves in a whole manner of ways.

Meanwhile, we’ve been treated to some great Twitter moments, as the social network has made news, and hosted news. From Kanye West’s seemingly unstoppable Twitter rants to online feuds (‘Twitter fingers’ as Drake so accurately phrased the phenomenon) that have caused a long list of celebs to quit the platform, only to return.

As part of its tenth birthday celebrations, Twitter created the #LoveTwitter hashtag, encouraging users to tweet their appreciation for its service (it has already been used in over 1 million posts). The service has also been shouting out some of its own favorite users, including Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, Tom Hanks, Vice President Joe Biden, and the company’s CEO, Jack Dorsey, who got things underway with the first-ever tweet back in 2006.

just setting up my twttr

— Jack (@jack) March 21, 2006

Thanks @FLOTUS for being the first "First Lady" on Twitter, and joining us on YOUR birthday in 2013. #LoveTwitter

— Twitter (@twitter) March 21, 2016

Thank you, @taylorswift13 for celebrating love and sharing your stage with us every day. #LoveTwitter

— Twitter (@twitter) March 21, 2016

Thanks, @TomHanks for using Twitter to help the world find its socks! #LoveTwitter

— Twitter (@twitter) March 21, 2016

Twitter also released a treasure trove of stats to remind everyone of just how popular the site is.

Despite some tough competition from the members of One Direction, the most retweeted tweet remains Ellen Degeneres’ Oscar selfie from the ceremony she hosted in 2014. With a legion of Hollywood a-listers photobombing the image (including Brad Pitt, Jennifer Lawrence, and Kevin Spacey) the post was retweeted 3.3 million times.

If only Bradley's arm was longer. Best photo ever. #oscars

— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) March 3, 2014

The most followed person on Twitter is pop star Katy Perry, who currently boasts close to 85 million followers. Although rival network Instagram is dominated by her fellow singers Selena Gomez and Taylor Swift, Perry has amassed a devoted following on Twitter. The most mentioned person is also a pop star, namely Justin Bieber, who is currently the second most-popular user on the platform with over 77 million followers.

In regards to the general users that help make up its 320-million-strong user base, the service revealed that everyone’s favorite emoji is the tears of joy face, which has been shared a whopping 14.5 billion times. Yes, we all love laughing till we cry, perhaps in reaction to all the Twitter fails we have stood witness to over the last ten years.

Additionally, the most geotagged city is São Paulo, Brazil, and the word “love” has been mentioned 34.8 billion times. Alas, exaggerated online feuds aside, we’re all really just about the good vibes. As the celebrations show, a happy tenth birthday for Twitter is as much a pat on the back for the people that help make it such an essential part of our Web culture. Long may you tweet.

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