Londoners help primary teacher’s tweet reach 42 million, says SocialBro

By Javier Burón

The teacher, whose Twitter handle is @MrLaythorpe, wanted to teach his class about internet safety and demonstrate how far a photograph can travel in a week via social media. He posted an image of himself and a colleague holding a sign stating, “I am talking to my 4 grade students about internet safety and how quickly a photo can be seen by lots of people. If you are reading this please retweet it.” Mr Jeff Laythorpe, a teacher at J W Gerth School in Kitchener, Ontario, posted his call to action on 4 Feb and the experiment finished on Tuesday 11 February.

Researchers at SocialBro ran analytics on the retweets and found that the tweets crossed language barriers with many users getting involved despite not speaking English as their mother tongue. A number of influential users helped to spread the picture far and wide and well known participants in the experiment included Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, comedian Dara Ó Briain, and actor Zach Braff. The highest proportion of retweets came from the US, which counted for 15.3%, closely followed by the UK at 5.3% and at city level London was the top location.

Twitter is an incredibly powerful tool for spreading messages and information around the world. The experiment highlights how quickly a picture can go viral on Twitter and that language barriers on the web are less of an issue today. This is clearly demonstrated by the number of countries retweeting where English isn’t the first language.

Key numbers

42 million users have been exposed to the tweet which has been retweeted 88,898 times and favourited by 6,376 users. 24 Twitter users who have retweeted have more than 100,000 followers. City retweeting most = London. Gender split: Male (28.1%), Female (26.2%), Other/Unknown (45.8%).

Top ten countries by number of retweets


About the author

Javier Burón, founder and CEO of SocialBro

SocialBro is an advanced cloud solution for the management and analysis of Twitter communities. It enables Twitter for businesses, helping companies to better engage with their audience and increase their communities’ growth qualitatively.

Since its launch in May 2010, SocialBro has achieved rapid growth attracting over 180,000 users from 70 countries including a significant proportion of professional Twitter users, corporates and agencies, such as CBS, NASCAR, Coca-Cola, T-Mobile and Publicis.

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