How / Why did Rakhi trend – A case study

August 3, 2009 at 11:55 pm | Posted in arbit, criticism, fakereviews, humour, Internet, spam, Technical, twitter, Visions | 10 Comments
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I assume that most of you are still recovering from last night’s events. Totally surreal stuff, I must say. Triple Baaraats, 3 grooms , 2 idiot MC’s and of course the multiplee talented Rakhi Sawant. A by-product of this whole ruckus was that India witnessed yet another trending topic [after #indiavotes09 etc ]

This was a pretty interesting experience to watch, as well as to participate in, as one could clearly see the effect of opinion snowballing, and mass-hysteria eventually taking over.

This is all I can say about ‘why’ did Rakhi trend. Well you see, ‘ The human mind is a complex system, and…”.

Oh, ditch that. It’s the ‘how’ that’s explainable.

So, how did Rakhi Madamji muster so much mojo?

Well, the obvious answer has to got to be – “due to a lot of tweets in a short timeframe”.

For the uninitiated, I’ll provide the same background that I wrote on http://whatthetrend.com/trend/Rakhi [ which incidentally, is a wonderful site to know why a topic is trending on twitter. So the next time you see something like “Cash for Clunkers” or ” Bob Saget’s gone bonkers” trending on twitter, you know where to look for answers ]

Rakhi Sawant is an Indian film actress who participated in a Reality Show on National Television (Channel – NDTV Imagine) called “Rakhi Ka Swayamvar” to select a bridegroom for her. In the Final show aired tonight (2-aug-2009), she selected “Elesh Parujanwala” from Canada as her husband to be.

[ I’d throw in an image but for the fact that I couldn’t find a single decent picture, and even among the bhajan variety, there were none with a Creative commons license. Perverts, please search here ]

So, with this much info, lets dive into some statistics.

[ Note: ATPS – Average Tweets Per Second ]

The show started at around 9.00 p.m [ I.S.T], and for the initial 10 minutes the tweet flow was quite slow, at around 5 ATPS ]

Soon, some celebrities [or  twittebrities, if that floats your boat ],  joined in the action, and all hell broke loose. Some samples.

gulpanag

[ Ah, the marvels of good liquor ]

pritish_nandy

[ Sums up the nation’s opinion with this tweet ]

Soon enough, the twitter universe was flooded with retweets, ” what the eff ” ‘s, <brain explodes>, ‘shoot me. shoot me now‘ ‘s , on one end.

Not to be perturbed by this, the positive Rakhi Chee forces retaliated with tweets like ” Go Elesh“, ” I’d marry Elesh, He’s cho cute“, ” OMG, Rakhi Sawant looks so hot  ya“.

But it was mostly the apathetic crowd that both cheered and jeered [ I know that doesn’t make sense on many levels, but work with me on this ], that was the peach of the tweetset. Sample these.

shaaqt

[ Witty that one ]

schmmuck

[‘Main is Desh ka damaad Hoon’, but in a canadian accent. Sounds vaguely familiar]

By this time [ around 9.30 p.m], the term was buzzing on Twittscoop at around 10 ATPS. The next best term was “Shark week” at 30 ATPS, which had already started to trend. So, on an a normal day with not much news happening [ no plane crashes, no celebrity deaths, no white police / afro-american professor drinking chilled beers with the U.S president ], we can make a decent speculation that there has to be atleast 30 ATPS for a topic to trend.

This by itself is no mean feat, so Kudos to Rakhi for keeping us glued to the telly. Assume that the average twitterer, even in the heights of their frenzy tweets about 1 tweet per 10 minutes.

[ The power twitterer does about 1 tweet in 2 minutes say, and the other twitterer who’s just an innocent bystander,just pops in to say ” Oh, why’s this topic trending”. say 1 tweet per 30 minutes].

In some universe with a favourable averaging scheme, the number 1 tweet in 10 minutes figures, and I’ll use that.

To achieve a critical state of 30 ATPS, for say about an hour, for the trend to be noticed, we’d need,

1 person can tweet 1 tweet in 10 minutes = 1 / 600 ATPS

x people need to tweet 30  tweets in 1 second. 30 ATPS

So, assuming an equal distribution of tweeting in the timeframe, we needed about 18000 people to start the trend, which is quite reasonable and achievable, since there around 25 million twitter users globally out of which around 2% are Indian, [1] [2], which makes it a potential 500,000 Indian users.

This was the tweet density for yesterday. This is what a one-time-wonder trend looks like.

rakhi_sawant_tweet_density

So, as you can notice, ‘rakhi’ was in the limelight for around 2 hours[ mentally visualize chopping off the curve where the height reaches 30 ]

[ graph courtesy: Twittscoop ]

There were some obvious side-effects of this inane exercise. People not used to seeing their twitter stream getting littered like this, got extremely pissed off, and started issuing death threats in all possible directions. Sample.

andi

[ My my, such strong emotions. Now you know how provocative Rakhi’s aura can be ]

So, in conclusion. Bah, easy peasy work. We can make anything trend, given enough determination, teamwork and resolute joblessness.

Hum honge #kaamyaab ek din. [ Loosely translates to ” May the #manForce be with you” ]

P.S: Respect to all the twitterers featured in this post. I come in peace. Don’t shoot the messenger.

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Honey, I shrunk the Url…

July 26, 2009 at 10:30 pm | Posted in arbit, criticism, humour, twitter | 6 Comments
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For numerous reasons, I don’t like bit.ly so much. Some of them being –

  • They don’t have a middle layer which acts as a NSFW [ stands for Get Kicked Out of Office if you open This here] warning. There’s the append ‘+’ at the end of the link hack. But seriously, who does that usually? You barely have enough time to click on links these days, save reading their contents as well.
  • They’ve a “This page has been reported to serve malware in generous doses” middle layer, but since it’s Mr.Twitter who’s one of their major link sources, this has to be more ‘realtime’. Depends on what realtime means, yes. But everyone’s using that word nowadays, so what the heck.
  • They’ve a twitter monopoly. You’ve got to hate the leader. It’s a rule.

So, Should I plan to start my own Url Shortening service, it wouldn’t have all these issues. And just to humor myself,  I shall call it id.ly

And since there’s no Country Top-Level domain with .da, I’ll have no competitors like va.da . Humour monopoly, FTW…

Pre-(Post-Script):

Is there a Mai Ka Laal, who can gift Mr. Veerappa with a moi.ly domain… He’d be the cool-kid on the block, instead of the peddler-like grumpy face that he flaunts usually.

You know, as genuinely awesome as the chap to the right, who’s currently booked under the Limca records, for the fastest fast in India. [ No, I’m kidding. Maybe]

Moily-Karunanidhi

Obligatory Show-off Post-script section :

Whate pity. Honourable Son of the Soil can’t get the prized gow.da. He’ll have to settle for de.ve , I guess.

Well, You know, I tweet. Sometimes.

June 7, 2008 at 2:46 am | Posted in arbit, criticism, humour, narcissism, sarcasm, Technical, twitter, Visions | 4 Comments
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As you all are well-aware by now, there is this regularly dysfunctional site called Twitter which allows several critters like me to post the answer to the greatest question the human race has ever asked.
Which is……..
“What are you doing now”?
To be answered in 140 characters or less. Phew. Now, that’s a toughie.
If only it was as simple as the answer to life, universe, and everything.
Barring mundane, obscene,irrelevant, personal, and utterly inane tweets[ more on this annoying term later], a normal person would not find much to tweet about.
Thusly, twitter is out of business.

Wrong on two counts.

  • My assumption that people wouldn’t want to share such routine stuff.
  • And that the kind of people who refer to this act as tweeting are sensible to begin with.

Now, for their technical issues. For starters, they tried to do too many things at the same time.

  • web-service – good
  • Im service – good
  • Mobile-tweeting – good , so that you can say ” hey there is a monkey walking on the street”. I’m not sure which retard would actually write something like that. But their site says this is the single most important reason that led them to E-nable this feature.
  • Iphones[ no no.. they are not just cell-phones. They are I-PHONES], twitterfox, opera twitter gadgets. Heck, any text-entry mechanism ever-built has some twitter client attached to it by now. There was this kid, who tweets from his command line. I pity the fool.

All at once, with limited resources to handle it. Bad.
Well, all would have been fine. They didn’t expect one thing. You guessed it. The no. of users.
So, every now and then their service goes down. Which is more often than ever.

The irony of course lies in this aspect. There was this tiny little site run by this nice chap, with a well-defined purpose. That site of-course was, Is Twitter Down . Now I say ‘was’ because since the time twitter went comatose today, even this site has. You could call it the Slashdot-esque effect, . Wait, I’ve an even brilliant idea. You’ve been twitted . Ha ha….
“Is twitter down” is down? Hey, maybe I can open a new site to check that. But how far can we go in this stupid endeavour when the faults lie deep within Twitter.

So, gear up folks. Use that crisp 15million bucks to good effect.

For Pete’s sake. Let a man tweet.

Well, about tweet. This is one of the most annoying web2.0 terms that I’ve heard. However, its not something new. Guys who do similar stuff also have stupid names. Jaiku, Pownce
What’s it with micro-blogging and icky terms?

P.S: The author tweets at

twitter

Additional twitter information: Wiki , Killer-Apps [ Cho Tweet].
And a twit-toon.

One more, that asks me to politely stop this post.

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