“Whether it’s celebrity, whether it’s sport, whether it’s social movement, whether it’s technology, whether it’s politics, or whether it’s music and culture, stories are happening on Twitter all the time,” Jake Steadman, the platform’s senior director of research, told the IIeX conference (Amsterdam, February 2018). “What we wanted to understand was the science behind that.”

It’s important to remember that tweets are picked up in many ways that extend their reach beyond the platform itself, he added. “Tweets in newspapers, on other websites, on TV channels, tattooed on someone - they’re everywhere these days, and that’s really important for us to understand. How does a tweet live off Twitter as much as it lives on Twitter?”

An example of what he meant came from Love Island, a UK dating reality TV show, where single contestants are required to “couple up” to have any chance of remaining in a luxury island villa. During the most recent series, one couple included a man named Chris, to whom grime artist Stormzy tweeted a message saying "You’re too good for her, mate".