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How Old Is Twitter: Revisiting the Start of the Media Giants


June 9, 2023 | 9 min read

Although Twitter is one of the most used social media applications, some of its history isn’t well known. For instance, some platform users are still unsure about when it started. Due to the recent takeover, there has been a lot of news about the social media giants. Most of the facts regarding its ownership have become public information. But there remain questions like “How old is Twitter?”

Twitter started in March 2006 as a side project by Jack Dorsey, Biz Stone, Evan William, and Noah Glass. This project, which initially stemmed from a broadcasting tool, Odeo, was first used on March 21, 2006. Due to the persisting inquiries about this app’s age and ownership, this guide covers the topic deeply. Let’s dive in. 

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How Old Is Twitter in 2023: Discovering the Age of the Platform

Like many other social media platforms, Twitter underwent many metamorphoses before attaining the modern version we enjoy today. Within this period, most of its features have resulted from the suggestions of its users over time. Because of this, it has become efficient as a proponent of discussion and conversation. Due to its immense popularity, people wonder, “How old is Twitter in 2023?”

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How Did It Start, and How Old Is Twitter?

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Regarding the question of “how old is Twitter,” Twitter began on March 21, 2006. So, by indication, it will be 17 years old in 2023. Its initial name was “Twittr,” and its role was to be an internal communications system for the podcasting company Odeo. Twttr, Jack Dorsey’s idea, was meant to allow him and his coworkers to share short messages. This new application was to work in a similar way to text messages. 

In the earlier months of 2006, Dorsey and his colleagues at Odeo were the sole users of the platform. Eventually, the founders introduced the social media website to the public on July 15, 2006. In the first few months after its launch, Twitter saw around 20,000 tweets daily. However, within the next few months, this figure rose to 60,000. By the following year, Twitter was already a trending topic and blew up at the South by Southwest Interactive Conference. 

Twitter’s popularity skyrocketed after the platform garnered tons of recognition at the South by Southwest Interactive Conference in 2007. Twitter became widely known in the niche of social media within a blip. By 2008, the application had started receiving over 300,000 tweets every day. This figure rose to 50 million tweets a day by early 2010. 

Besides being a convenient way to share posts and messages, Twitter enabled companies to advertise their pedicures and interact with consumers. Eventually, different businesses and television shows began to promote specific hashtags, which created a space for these businesses. Twitter handles came into use, acting as identifiers for individuals and corporations.

The Evolution of Twitter to Its Current Version 

Apart from the query, “How old is Twitter,” there is the topic of its evolution. Since its launch, Twitter has undergone massive improvements and changes, which have created the version we use today. Over the past few years, the social media company has remained one of the big birds in the industry. Individuals and organizations use this platform daily, making over 500 million tweets daily. 

Twitter has been a helpful tool for businesses, from small and medium-sized enterprises to large corporations. This media allows businesses to interact with their customers, maintain knowledge of newer trends and promote themselves. It also allows businesses to make adverts on the platform, targeting specific audiences in age, location, and demographics. The company has changed these features over time to improve efficiency and get better results. 

Twitter has recently introduced many security and safety systems to safeguard users against abuse and harassment. These include options to report users, block and unblock Twitter accounts, and deal with harmful content. Well, Twitter has come a long way since its introduction to the public. Its growth from an internal communications system to a worldwide social media application has steadily grown. Overall, the website has played its part in fashioning online communication and interaction. 

Who Is the Real Owner of Twitter: Unveiling the Facts

Although inquiries like “How old is Twitter” exist, there are other concerns about its ownership. The ownership of Twitter has always been an unclear affair. Although people have always known about the group of founders, the company has had multiple people in charge. Sometimes in the past, Twitter has changed CEOs over short intervals. However, the 2022 takeover by billionaire Elon Musk has made everything clear enough. But still, people ask questions like “Who is the real owner of Twitter?”

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Who Owns Twitter Now, and Who Is in Charge?

Twitter’s ownership is no longer a matter of controversy despite the vocal takeover that occurred in October 2022. Besides questions like “How old is Twitter,” its current ownership is another cause for curiosity. In April 2022, billionaire businessman Elon Musk started the process of acquiring the social media company Twitter. Musk first started buying the company’s shares in January 2022. He established himself as the largest shareholder in April 2022, when he amassed a 9.1 stake in the company. 

Afterward, Twitter called for Musk to join its board of directors. Musk accepted the offer before quickly declining again. On April 14, 2022, Musk offered to buy out the company. Although the company rejected the offer, it eventually unanimously accepted the offer. After the board accepted the offer, Musk relayed his plans to add new features to the application. He also publicized his plans to tackle spam accounts, foster free speech, and make Twitter’s algorithms open-source.

In July 2022, Elon Musk announced that he intended to cancel the agreement. He asserted that Twitter had not respected their agreement by not accepting to deal with spam accounts on the platform. Shortly after, the company filed a lawsuit against Musk; a trial was looming. Weeks before the trial, Musk changed course and announced that he was going on with the buyout. 

He closed the buyout deal on October 27, 2022, immediately becoming the CEO and owner of the company. Twitter became private and entered a new parent company, X Corp. Shortly after, Musk fired many top executives, laying off half of the company’s employees. Hundreds of other staff also resigned from the company due to policy changes. Musk has proposed and implemented several changes on the platform, including the paid subscription for “Twitter Blue.” 

What Reforms Have Twitter’s Ownership Implemented?

Although answers to inquiries like “How old is Twitter,” are essential, there are also questions regarding the platform’s newer reforms. Twitter’s new ownership under Elon Musk has proposed and implemented several management changes and reforms. Upon acquiring the company, Elon Musk reinstated several banned accounts. The reinstated accounts include Donald Trump, Jordan Peterson, The Babylon Bee, Andrew Tate, and Kathy Griffin. 

Musk also introduced the Twitter Blue feature that allows users to purchase blue checkmarks, indicative of verification on the platform. Nonetheless, the company delayed this feature due to the fear of interference in the November 2022 United States midterm elections. Subsequently, Twitter introduced gold checkmarks for businesses and gray checkmarks for government accounts. 

Additionally, Twitter began to label organizations with their state affiliations. It first labeled the National Public Radio’s Twitter account as “US state-affiliated media.” It also labeled the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation as a “government-funded media.” These organizations protested against these labels, announcing they would stop using the platform. In April 2023, Twitter ended this policy, with neither Russian, Chinese, nor Western outlets carrying the labels. 

Twitter also made several API changes, cutting off many third-party applications and causing them to stop functioning. The company cited long-standing rules on the Application Programming Interface as the reason for the cut-off. However, it announced creating a basic paid tier for third-party developers. 

Original Owner of Twitter: Who Owned the Company Before Elon Musk?

Due to the massive attention accompanying the company’s takeover, there have been several inquiries about the original owner of Twitter. Several individuals and corporations were in charge of Twitter before it went to private ownership. Initially, the founders had kept hold of a part of the social media platform, while other investors and shareholders also held part of the stake. 

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Did the Original Founders of Twitter Own the Company?

Despite continued questions like “How old is Twitter,” there are other inquiries about the fate of its founders. Although institutional investors majorly owned Twitter when Elon Musk purchased it, the founders were still in the picture. Jack Dorsey, one of the owners, had over 18 million shares valued at over one billion dollars. He rolled over his shares during the takeover, retaining his 2.4 percent stake. 

In addition, Twitter’s former CEO, Parag Agrawal, had over 128,000 shares at the point of the takeover. These shares were worth around seven million dollars when Musk bought the company. The company’s finance chief, Ned Segal, owned 394,000 shares worth 21 million dollars. Concurrently, the company’s head of legal policy, trust, and safety, Vijaya Gadde, owned 600,000 shares valued at 32 million dollars. Other individuals also held shares in the company during the buyout. 

Which Corporations Owned Most of Twitter Before Musk’s Buyout?

Reports had stated that private companies and investment funds owned over 80 percent of the company before the buyout. For instance, in April 2022, the Vanguard Group achieved the status of Twitter’s largest shareholder ahead of Elon Musk. Vanguard Group had a 10.3 percent stake in the social media company, including a combination of various investments. 

After billionaire Elon Musk, Morgan Stanley Investment Management had the third biggest stake in the company. This investment group had 8.4 percent of the company’s stake. Two fund managers, State Street, and BlackRock, each owned 4.75 percent of the company’s shares. Overall, these are essential information other than answers to questions like “How old is Twitter.”At TweetEraser, we’ve designed a simple web application that is easy to use. This application helps users to filter and delete tweets in large numbers. The tool also imports and processes archives, allowing users to quickly remove older tweets, retweets, and perform other actions. TweetEraser is the go-to for tweeps looking to clean their Twitter timelines. Start filtering and cleaning your Twitter timeline today!

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