Sports fans are raising Twitter's usage to a new level: A goal by Japan's World Cup soccer team against Cameroon on June 14 led to a record number of "tweets per second" for Twitter, only to see the record beaten again a few days later when the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Boston Celtics in the deciding game of the NBA championships.
The Japanese goal, which led to a 1-0 victory for the team, resulted in a peak of 2,940 tweets per second in the 30 seconds following the game according to a post on the Twitter blog. So far, the second-place tweet ranking for the World Cup, which runs through July 11 in South Africa, has been 2,928 tweets per second when Brazil scored its first goal against North Korea in the game that it ultimately won on June 14. Third place was 2,704, when Mexico tied South Africa. The U.S. team's unexpected tie against England didn't make the cut. (Twitter wasn't yet available for comment on what the tweet rate right after that game was.)
The peak rate of tweets following the NBA victory for the Lakers, however, was 3,085. That's currently the highest rate of tweets per second that Twitter has ever seen, but it'll likely be shattered again as the World Cup grows closer to the finals.
A post on the Twitter blog explains that Twitter's normal "TPS" count averages about 750 tweets per second, and that 65 million tweets are posted per day by the service's 190 million users. But there's a negative side, too: The rapid growth and heavy usage, particularly given the World Cup excitement, has meant that Twitter's simultaneously experiencing some of its greatest server instability in years.