Three years ago, HuffPost embarked on a bold journey of shortened links, direct messages, and the pursuit of brevity.
Our first recorded article about Twitter came from blogger Kirstin Gorski, on January 21, 2008. Twitter, Gorski wrote, was "a free 'microblogging' service that lets anyone share online what they are doing or thinking, in 140 characters or less (including spaces)."
Six months later, blogger Michelle Haimoff described one of "the latest online social networking trends" -- Twitter -- "where you tell strangers (and non-strangers) where you are and what you're doing at any given time."
By then, we were up and tweeting. April 28, 2008 was our first day.
Over the next few months, we steadily picked up followers; by September, we had hit 50,000.
But it was in the middle of that month when things really started to pick up. In the second week of September, we jumped from 48,000 to 78,000 followers (was it Joe Wilson's infamous "You Lie" interruption?), and the next week to 116,000. By the end of October, we had almost a quarter-million followers, and by year's end, had broken 400,000.
Today, we're at 995,000 and counting.
In honor of our impending million-member milestone, we want to reward our loyal Twitter readers. Tell us why you love to follow HuffPost, using the hashtag #HuffPost1M, and win free prizes!
- Three winners -- the one-millionth follower, and two additional winners chosen randomly from our following -- will win a new iPad 2.
- Ten winners with the best #HuffPost1M tweets will be Retweeted by HuffingtonPost in the days after we hit 1,000,000.
- Fifteen winners, picked randomly from our followers, will get a #FollowFriday shout-out from @HuffingtonPost on the Friday after we cross 1,000,000 followers.
Thanks so much, Twitter followers!