There are any number of ways to measure just how deeply Justin Bieber has impacted American society: from platinum record sales to sold-out shows packed with screaming fans to the popularity of the singer's signature brush-down bowl haircut. But on Tuesday, a designer at Twitter put Bieb's influence in a thoroughly modern context.
"At any moment, Justin Bieber uses 3 percent of our infrastructure. Racks of servers are dedicated to him," tweeted Dustin Curtis, a designer who works at the micro-blogging service. That tidbit should come as no surprise, since Bieber — slated to perform at Sunday night's MTV Video Music Awards — has more than 5 million followers and is an almost daily trending topic on the 140-character-limit service. He also noted that there are three things that reliably drive traffic at Twitter: "(a) bashing airlines, (b) bashing Comic Sans, (c) Justin Bieber."
Tech blog Gizmodo reported that Curtis confirmed his tweet was no joke and that he got that information directly from another Twitter employee. Given the fact that Twitter has 180 million unique visitors a month, the blog noted that his 3 percent land grab is pretty impressive.
Curtis later tweeted that "most of the popular users on Twitter have dedicated servers for their accounts," which The Hollywood Reporter took to mean that stars such as Ashton Kutcher, Britney Spears and Kim Kardashian, each with more than 4 million followers, likely have their own racks as well.
The 27th annual MTV Video Music Awards will be broadcast live from the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday. The party starts with MTV News' VMA Pre-Show at 8 p.m., followed by the main event at 9 p.m. ET.