Twitter descended into a state of unprecedented chaos this past weekend, leaving users feeling overwhelmed and disheartened. Elon Musk, the owner of Twitter, announced a plan to combat extensive data scraping by limiting non-Twitter Blue subscribers to a mere 600 posts per day. Once this limit was reached, any action on the platform triggered a frustrating “rate-limit exceeded” error.
In the aftermath of yet another disruptive episode instigated by Musk, users sought solace in alternative social media platforms, resulting in a whirlwind of growth for these competitors.
Among the sea of new apps, one emerged as the triumphant victor of the weekend: Spill. Founded by former Black Twitter employees, Spill was purposefully crafted as a social platform that fosters diverse communities right from its inception, rather than as an afterthought. While the app had recently launched in a closed beta phase a few weeks ago, it experienced an astonishing surge of over 100,000 new user accounts created during this eventful weekend.
Spill’s success in attracting notable celebrities to join the platform cannot be overstated. Influential figures such as Keke Palmer and Ava DuVernay have already become part of the Spill community. Even Questlove, the renowned musician from The Roots, tweeted a link promoting his Spill profile. Lizzo, ever inquisitive, took to Instagram and Twitter in hopes of securing an invite to join Spill.
As of now, Spill reigns as the top-ranked social networking app on the iOS App Store, claiming the third position overall.
In defiance, Spill CEO Alphonzo “Phonz” Terrell took to Twitter, proclaiming, “They tried to bury us. They didn’t know we were seeds.”
Another notable contender that experienced a significant surge over the weekend was Bluesky, a decentralized app backed by Twitter founder Jack Dorsey. According to data collected by third-party developers, Bluesky’s user base soared from approximately 184,000 on Friday to around 238,000 by Monday. These figures would have been even higher, but Bluesky remains an invite-only platform.
Post, an alternative to Twitter focused on publishers, revealed to TechCrunch that daily active users quadrupled, and new sign-ups increased tenfold since the rate-limiting issues began plaguing Twitter on Saturday. However, specific user numbers were not disclosed by Post.
Although the temporary rate-limiting on Twitter seems to have subsided, every colossal misstep by the Musk-led platform pushes more users to explore alternative options. Mastodon, which conveniently launched on Android over the weekend, was initially regarded as a frontrunner among Twitter competitors.
Prior to Musk’s acquisition of Twitter, Mastodon boasted around 380,000 monthly active users. Within a mere two months, the open-source federated platform skyrocketed to 2.5 million monthly active users. While this number has since declined to approximately 1.4 million, it still represents more than triple its monthly active user base from the previous year.
This summer, the anticipation mounts as Meta prepares to enter the battle with its very own Twitter clone, rumored to be named Threads. Let the games commence, as a new chapter unfolds in the realm of social media.