Time: Why Is Twitter So Popular in Brazil?: the regular appearance of Portuguese phrases on Twitter's popularity charts. ...... 23% of Internet users in Brazil — compared with 11.9% in the U.S. — visited Twitter this past August, the highest rate of participation by any country in the world .... In a country known for its vast gulf between the rich and poor, Twitter has managed to cut across the class divide. "It's not something that's just for rich Brazilians" ..... "The main reason Twitter is so huge in Brazil is because it gives access to normal people to contact their idols." ...... the country's soccer stars were among the earliest proponents of Twitter. ..... Twitter's success in Brazil .... is tied intimately to the history of the country's rise from the shadow of authoritarianism to its newfound status as a budding global power. ..... the fact that Brazil is away from the rest of the world motivates Brazilians ..... "There's a tremendous thirst to find out what the latest trend is." ..... Much of Brazil's transformation can be seen through the spread of telecommunications and the growth of social media...... Twitter, which entered the Brazilian market first as an SMS service. ..... the country's "Popular PC Project" of installing cheap computers in poorer areas has become a model the world over..... The civic participation of a once nonexistent middle class has also fueled Twitter's rise in Brazil. .... "There's a big bias in mass media against Lula" ..... the champion of Brazil's poor who himself only has a fourth-grade education. "The Internet's a way to fight back."
Image via CrunchBase .... Brazilians have taken to social-media websites other than Twitter. Google's social-media venture, Orkut, has found little success in the U.S., but in Brazil, the website was the beneficiary of 36 million unique visits in August, according to comScore. Facebook, too, is taking off in Brazil. In just one year's time, Facebook saw a growth of 479% in membership, leaping from 1 million to 9.5 million Brazilian members. It's a phenomenon that's planting deep roots. "My sister is 10 years old. My grandmother is 82," says Simas of MTV Brasil. "And they both have Twitter."
This is the story of technology being intimately tied to the life of a nation, a people, the way it should be. Twitter is simple technology. It is egalitarian. Anyone can tweet, pretty much. In that way Twitter is the ultimate two way media. And that speaks to the historically powerless. You can cut through the mass media noise and go straight to the celebrity you worship. Only you understand, only they understand,
Image via CrunchBase or so it feels when it is one on one.
Mass media is mass media. But Twitter is the media of the masses. Participation in social media near daily empowers a people in ways that voting once every few years can not. If voting is such a great thing, why can't I vote every single day? Several times a day?
But there has to be something unique to Brazil that Orkut and Twitter have done so well in that country. There must be cultural traits that make that particular country stand out. What are those? I have some ideas when it comes to soccer. But I am not sure how exactly that works for Twitter. Maybe it is about soccer! Soccer and how fundamental that game is to the fabric of that country.
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