Over 200M deleted tweets have been analyzed in 2020 and summarized in an infographic by Tweet Deleter – a Latvian startup that has its origins in a 2011 Garage48 hackathon. The infographic shows that an increase in deleted tweets began in April, with peak deleting in June. Of the deleted tweets, most contained either profanities or keywords related to race.
Twitter is used by 321 million users worldwide. A look into tweet deleting trends makes it possible to decipher the most important events impacting society, as those deletions represent not only current mindsets, but also how they have changed over time.
The tweets were analyzed over the course of a year using the Tweet Deleter app, which lets Twitter users delete tweets in bulk, among other things. The yearly deletion trends started at 12M deleted tweets in January. In April that rate grew to nearly 30M deleted tweets per month, with the peak being reached in June with 36M deleted tweets.
“Historically, we’ve usually seen peak deleting happen after the end-of-year celebrations, often tied to new year’s resolutions and starting the year with a blank slate. However, this year we see that 2020 has had other major events that have eclipsed business as usual.” – Jekabs Endzins, Founder
Based on keyword statistics, the most deleted tweets contained profanities (36.21%), and the next largest deletion trend contained keywords pertaining to race (18.17%).
Tweet Deleter surveyed users deleting tweets to ask why they were doing so. Common answers included:
- Cleaning up the feed for potential employers to see
- Getting rid of embarrassing tweets
- A change of opinions than what past tweets represent
- An understanding that their tweets were offensive
- Clearing the slate for a new year
Though the Twitter user demographics are 70% male, 30% female, the tweet deleting demographics are much more balanced, with 53% men and 47% women deleting their tweets. The most individuals deleting their tweets were from the USA, with Japan and the UK following.