For the people’s obituary of Steve Jobs, look on Twitter. The death of Apple’s visionary leader prompted an outpouring by Apple fans and customers that appeared to dwarf any news chronicled on the micro-blogging site.
Twitter users from around the world contributed eulogies of 140 characters or less, supplementing obituaries from nearly every major media outlet.
Whether it was a direct quotation on the musings of Jobs or a misquote with the message intact, thousands of people, if not more, used Jobs’s own words to philosophise on death.
“No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there & yet it is the destination we all share-Steve Jobs,” quoted @SeanABennett on the site.
“Proud to share the same beliefs as Steve Jobs-follow ur heart & intuition, dream big, love what u do & stay driven. don’t let anything stop u,” wrote @MarissaNemes, using Twitter’s abbreviated argot to fit the Tweet into the limited space.
Others quoted US President Barack Obama, who testified to Jobs’ role in building the world’s biggest technology empire that brought people the Macintosh computer, iPod, iPhone and iPad.
“There may be no greater tribute to Steve’s success than the fact that much of the world learned of his passing on a device he invented,” Obama said.
Tweets came from all corners of the world, celebrating Jobs’s sleek designs.
“I have been in love with the world Steve Jobs made ever since my first Apple Mac. He was one of the great architects of the real. RIP,” wrote Salman Rushdie, the Indian author of The Satanic Verses and the Booker Prize-winning Midnight’s Children.
Multiple Twitter users reported seeing the dreaded “Fail Whale”, an image of a sperm whale that means Twitter was not able to handle the amount of messages it received.
Though this happens in many major news events, the amount of 140-character eulogies to Jobs appeared to dwarf many of those incidents.
“You know that somebody important has died when you keep getting the #FailWhale,” wrote Mike Shaw, or @zax2000 on Twitter. “It’s the new measure of somebody’s influence.”
Shortly after the news of Jobs’ death, “RIP Steve Jobs” was the top trending topic on Twitter in the San Francisco and New York regions.
As with many big events on Twitter, the love and respect sometimes moved into the realm of the odd and sarcastic.
“You left your mark on our desks, on our ears & in our hands,” wrote @darrenrovell, while @_UncleSam replied: “Funny you’re tweeting from a blackberry,” a device made by Apple competitor Research in Motion.
The deluge of praise at times crested into realms of questionable taste. @supreetkay wrote, “Apparently an apple a day couldn’t keep the doctor away,” followed by “#isad”. – Reuters