Social Networking Giants Battle For World Cup Bragging Rights

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It’s been almost three weeks since the end of the 2014 football world cup. But the battle between Facebook and Twitter still continues.

The Silicon Valley social networking giants spent their earnings calls bragging to investors about their World Cup wins. However, the companies didn’t make it easy to compare their performances. The giants saw a surge in usage as fans reacted play-by-play during the event in Brazil, one of the largest international sporting events.

Facebook said the World Cup broke all records for activity on the social network, engaging 350 million people in 3.5 billion “interactions”. Interactions came in the form of shares, likes and comments on posts.

On Twitter’s earnings call on July 30, the company disclosed numbers for just one game. The infamous semifinal match on July 8 — when Germany romped Brazil 7-1 on its home turf — generated 6.5 billion “impressions.”

Impressions mean the number of times all relevant tweets were viewed on Twitter, third-party apps and websites. It, however, doesn’t count television viewers who see a tweet on-screen.

A post on Twitter’s corporate blog the day after the World Cup ended said the event saw 672 million total tweets, including 35.6 million for the Germany —Brazil game. To achieve 6.5 billion impressions, the average tweet from that one match would have to be seen about 182 times — probably often by the same person considering the world population is 7 billion, and the number of people with internet access is less than 3 billion.

Twitter, obviously, needed the bragging rights more. The company’s stock, battered all year, gained 20% on July 31.

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