I eat this kinda shit up. Below, via this, is the top 20 cities ranked by number of twitter users:
It ranks by whether or not a user has put in their location, which skews things a bit (I don’t have a location in my profile, for example, though is more due to the fact that I don’t have a location), but its nonetheless interesting for anyone mildly obsessed with lists based on geography.
Some brief data analysis:
If you think in terms of population, cities like San Francisco, Boston, Austin, Seattle, and Portland have way more per-capita twitterers than say, New York, which actually falls behind Chicago, a city with about a quarter its population (if you go by city proper populations). Seattle is the 24th largest city in the US, and Portland the 30th. But they have 5th and 11th highest amount of twitterers.
Now, this gets complicated by how people decide what city are “located in.” The fact that Brooklyn shows up in the top 20, which suggests New Yorkers might be more likely to identify by borough as opposed to the general “New York” umbrella, unlike Chicago or LA – both ranked higher than New York – where residents may be more inclined to not say “West Hollywood” or whatever. Same goes for San Francisco or Boston or Seattle – which may have many residents not technically in its population who consider themselves residents of the city anyway.
But beyond that boring disclaimer… some cities that are light on twitterers? Houston, Dallas, Philadelphia, Phoenix, and San Antonio. All among the top ten most populous cities in the U.S., the first three rank slightly below at 12th, 13th, and 15th, while Phoenix and San Antonio rank 21st and 34th.
Up in Canada, Toronto ranks obviously #1 – with an impressive #6 showing overall (beating cities with twice its population), but Montreal is a bit too cool for Twitter, having Vancouver (a city with half Montreal’s population), outrank it exponentially (Montreal is way down at #36).
Twitter doesn’t seem to have caught on that much outside English speaking countries. The US, the UK, Canada, Ireland & Australia make up all but four slots on the top 50, with the exceptions being: Paris, Tokyo, Amsterdam and Berlin (although in what I assume is an error, “Scotland, Belize” is ranked 49th).
Anyway, this is a kind of pointless, but fun observation. Pointless especially since I still firmly believe that – in the wise words of The Soup’s John McHale – Twitter is the digital macarena.