Jakarta bests New York and L.A. as well as Tokyo, London, and São Paulo, according to a recent study.

More tweets come from Jakarta, Indonesia's capitol, than New York, Tokyo, London, or São Paulo, according to a recent study of Twitter's geographic footprint.

The study, released by Paris-based Semiocast, tracked the number of tweets with location info in the month of June, 2012. New York is the top U.S. city for tweets, outranking Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, Atlanta, and Houston. San Francisco, the city that the social media company calls home, doesn't make an appearance in the top 20. 

While Jakarta's high ranking might surprise some, it did not surprise my University of Toronto colleague, Barry Wellman, the leading social media sociologist and co-author of the book, Networked. "I'm not surprised, because I saw Indonesian language a lot on Twitter Trending Topics," writes Wellman in an email. "As far as U.S. cities, it looks mostly like a size effect."

Chart courtesy of Semiocast

There are a couple of big caveats about the study. Only 27 percent of the tweets analyzed by the study were found to have location-based information. The researchers culled this from profiles, time zones, languages, and, for a very small fraction, GPS locations — less than 1 percent of public tweets, according to the study, include this data.

We've talked about Twitter's impact before (read here and here). In a Twitter popularity-contest, Los Angeles has, by far, more top-followed users than any other city. And let's not forget that Los Angeles is also the international mecca for celebrity anyway.

One thing is clear: Twitter's forum, especially in cities, is huge. Now we just need to figure out what to call it.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. A Bird e-scooter on a San Francisco sidewalk.
    Transportation

    What Ends Up On the Sidewalk

    Sidewalks are a last shred of safe public space. No wonder we’re fighting over them.

  2. Transportation

    What's Crazy About Biking to the Hospital to Have a Baby?

    The stir caused by New Zealand minister Julie Anne Genter’s journey to an Auckland hospital says more about us than her.

  3. Life

    Discovering That Strangers Aren’t All That Strange

    Taking a class with a diverse group of Londoners helped me see the city and my neighbors in an altogether different light.

  4. Illustration of a house with separate activities taking place in different rooms.
    POV

    The Case for Rooms

    It’s time to end the tyranny of open-concept interior design.

  5. Law-enforcement officers stand at a New York City crime scene.
    Life

    The Geography of Urban Violence

    A new online mapping tool allows you to track long-term trends in violence across dozens of U.S. cities.