Ellen’s Oscar Selfie Crashes Twitter
Ellen DeGeneres‘ impromptu selfie with a group of Hollywood royalty took less than an hour to become the most re-tweeted image and tweet in the history of Twitter. The photo caused outages for the microblogging site, but provided great publicity for both the service and the Oscars, while setting an impressive new record for social content.
Ellen waded into the crowd during the three-and-a-half hour ceremony to snap the picture, quickly pulling together a group including Meryl Streep, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Kevin Spacey, Julia Roberts, Channing Tatum, Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Lupita Nyongo’o, and Nyongo’o's brother Peter Jr. Tweeting out the photo from her personal account, DeGeneres lamented that Cooper’s arms were not longer.
Tweeted just after 10pm EST, the message and photo took less than an hour to accumulate over 823,000 retweets, making in the most retweeted post ever. It surpassed a tweet from President Barack Obama on the eve of his reelection, which showed an image of he and First Lady Michelle Obama embracing, accompanied by the words “Four More Years.”
Minutes later, Ellen’s tweet became the first to surpass one million retweets. As of this morning, it had over 2.6 million.
Twitter reportedly experienced outages from the surge of traffic. Onstage later in the evening, Ellen said she had been contacted by the company about the crash; and the Oscars Twitter account tweeted a screenshot of the Twitter down screen, accompanied by the words “Sorry, our bad.”
Ellen’s tweets also unintentionally showed off the evening’s corporate sponsorship. While it was no accident that DeGeneres used a large Samsung handset when onstage (the company was a main sponsor and advertiser for the ceremony), her backstage tweets clearly came from “Twitter for iPhone.”