Earlier in the year, there was one battle that seemed to captivate star watchers worldwide: Ashton Kutcher vs. CNN in the battle to be the first person (or company) to have over 1 million followers on Twitter. Kutcher won the battle but he may not win the war. As of writing, 16 of Twitter’s elite have crossed the million followers mark. The question I’ve been wondering is not why would that many people follow them. Like the James Bond theme, it’s a case of “you know my name.” Rather, are these cewebrities actually tweeting anything worth reading?
#1 Ashton Kutcher (@aplusk) – 2,078,710 Followers
The current reigning and defending most followed person on Twitter that for some reason engaged in a battle with CNN to be the first to 1 million followers. I don’t see how he managed this many followers but I guess people like watching him act like a fool. A lot of replies to his followers so he does seem to care. Otherwise, and this may surprise you, his tweets are random and I think he tries to be funny but fails. I read some of the things in his accounts and I still have no idea why he’s so popular. I would avoid him if you value your intelligence.
#2 Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) – 1,786,754 Followers
Ellen hasn’t been on Twitter for too long but she’s hot on Kutcher’s heels and is blowing Oprah out of the water. There’s little in the way of plugging for her show, though she does mention the day’s guests occasionally. The thing she’s got going for her is that her daily anecdotes tend to be funny. Whether or not that’s because she’s a stand-up comic is beside the point. The way she’s tweeting now, she’s poised to overtake Kutcher any day now.
#3 CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) – 1,696,209 Followers
Despite all their campaigning on air, on their news ticker, and online, they’re falling in the grand scheme of Twitter. There’s good reason for that. Their Twitter is nothing more than a series of “important” headlines. Not all of them, just whatever makes the cut. There’s no details, no links to stories, just a sentence. This isn’t worth following. You would be better off getting a newsfeed from CNN than following them.
#4 Britney Spears (@britneyspears) – 1,685,195 Followers
Not a shining example of connecting with your fans. There’s very little here about what she’s doing. More promotion for her albums, singles, and concerts. It’s not even her account. Some updates are from Britney herself. Most are from her handlers. There’s not much here worth reading. Hell, they don’t even mention those topless pics that “leaked” to the internet.
#5 Oprah Winfrey (@oprah) – 1,336,827 Followers
Could this be a sign that Twitter has jumped the shark? When the queen of daytime TV jumped on the Twitter bandwagon, I’m sure most folks saw this as the end of Twitter as we knew it. But she isn’t all that bad. Then again, when Britney Spears is the benchmark of useless tweeters… Anyway, she does the obligatory plugging for her show and charitable causes she’s interested in. What surprised me is the number of tweets dedicated to her personal life. I figured that she would be on here for a couple of weeks then turn it over to cheap plugs from her staff. Full marks to the media mogul for sticking with it.
#6 Twitter (@twitter) – 1,316,429 Followers
This is Twitter’s official Twitter account. It’s more of a tech support feed. You can keep up to date on technical issues with the service and what’s new or upcoming on Twitter. They’ll also answer your Twitter related questions that you send them. Is it absolutely necessary to follow them? I don’t think so but it wouldn’t hurt to check in every so often.
#7 Barack Obama (@BarackObama) – 1,310,973 Followers
Is it just me or is there something wrong with the fact that the leader of the free world is less popular than the likes of Ashton Kutcher and Britney Spears? Maybe it’s because the account has been relatively quiet since he won the election. Or it could be the fact that it’s become generic updates on the Obama presidency that you can get anywhere, not just here. This was good when it was connecting with America’s youth and creating a social movement during the campaign. Now, it’s obsolete.
#8 John Mayer (@johncmayer) – 1,256,465 Followers
This is largely a collection of the musician’s seemingly random thoughts. I don’t know what he sings but I do know he was dating Jennifer Aniston. He hasn’t mentioned her recently so that may mean points off. Like this blog, it’s full of funny things and randominity which is actually a good thing. If you’re a fan of his music or just want a look inside the mind of an A-list celebrity (He is an A-list celeb, right?), the he’s one to follow.
#9 Ryan Seacrest (@RyanSeacrest) – 1,214,441 Followers
To be honest, I’m surprised that he isn’t @SeacrestOut. There’s a lot of pop culture news and views on here but do we expect less of him. Quite a few tweets have links back to his website. He does share some details of what he’s up to in everyday life. There’s not much of note here. It’s very polished, professional, and not terribly funny (though he does have his moments). I’m not a fan of Seacrest but it’s actually not that bad.
#10 Shaquille O’Neal (@THE_REAL_SHAQ) – 1,152,788 Followers
Shaq is easily the overlord and benchmark for celebrity twitterers. He tweets about anything you can think of: thoughts of the day, basketball, what he’s been up to, replying to fans. He’s even tweeted his whereabouts at a given time and given free stuff to the first person to find him. He also seems to have the best knack for Twitter language. He’s short and to the point. Just a touch incomprehensible but always funny and insightful. It’s an added bonus that Twitter’s skyrocketing popularity is partially attributed to him. Even if you don’t like sports, Shaq is an absolute must follow.
#11 Jimmy Fallon (@jimmyfallon) – 1,144,869 Followers
I haven’t seen his late night talk show but can only assume that he laughs through all his jokes like he did on SNL. He retweets a lot of things people say to or about him which seems like he’s being a touch superficial. Before he started Late Night, he had some more details of what he was up to. Since then, it’s gone downhill to the occasional update and preview of the night’s show. Good for insomniacs but not recommended otherwise.
#12 Demi Moore (@mrskutcher) – 1,126,547 Followers
I think she’s got this backwards. Ashton should be @mrmoore. Then again, a few years ago, I would have said that Ashton was riding Demi’s coattails. Now, I might say that the roles have been reversed. Anywho, she has a lot of replies and retweets on her account. The few tweets on there that don’t fall under those categories are largely for charitable causes. Not much in here about Demi herself so it’s not really my cup of tea.
#13 Diddy (@iamdiddy) – 1,071,888 Followers
I’m not really sure what to say about this. He links to videos, gives away some songs, and makes a few announcements. Not much in the way of info on the day-to-day happenings in the life of Diddy. He seems to be all over the place with his updates. Quite honestly, I have no idea what he’s on about half the time. That’s saying something since Shaq is pretty confusing too but at least I can understand him.
#14 The New York Times (@nytimes) – 1,019,752 Followers
This one is similar to @cnnbrk. The only difference is that it’s just a headline followed by a link to a full story. Again, you would be better off with a newsfeed. If you insist on following a news organization, this is the better of the two in the millionaires club.
#15 Lance Armstrong (@lancearmstrong) – 1,004,051 Followers
The seven-time Tour de France champion has really gotten into this Twitter thing. So much so that his newborn baby boy was on Twitter less than 24 hours after being born. He’s actually one of the better celebrity Tweeters out there. He’s always giving updates as to what he’s up to whether it’s training or hanging with his kid. The good thing with Lance is that he’s always firing off updates so you won’t go days from hearing from him like some other celebs. Whatever you think about Lance’s seven victories (you know what I mean), he’s got a pretty decent Twitter.
#16 Kim Kardashian (@kimkardashian) – 1,003,886 Followers
Can someone explain to me why she’s famous? So she has a backside that dwarf’s JLo’s and comes from a famous family. Oh, and there was the sex tape. Anyhow, she’s got all sorts of updates. Usually about where she’s making appearances or who she’s going to see. She tends to use this as a surrogate email or instant messenger as she sends a lot of messages to friends and family. It seems as though if you’re a fan, there’s not much chance of getting a message. I can’t think of a reason to follow her.