Why are companies, and even Joe Biden, posting one-word tweets?

If you’ve been scrolling through Twitter today you might have been baffled to see several companies posting apparently cryptic one-word tweets.

It all started when the US train company Amtrak accidentally tweeted the word “trains” on Thursday evening.

The tweet had gained more than 153,000 likes and 23,000 retweets by midday UK time on Friday after mischievous Twitter users spotted the apparent mishap.

Not wanting to miss an opportunity for self-promotion, a number of companies jumped on the bandwagon and posted similar tweets, kickstarting a viral trend.

They were joined by a world leader, a sporting icon and even a Marvel superhero as the trend picked up steam.

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US President Joe Biden took a break from his busy schedule as leader of the free world to tweet the word “democracy” – something he fears is under threat in the US because of the “extreme ideology” of Donald Trump and his supporters.

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Some Twitter users would have been stumped when cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar joined in the fun by simply tweeting the name of his favourite sport.

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Superhero fans would have marvelled at Deadpool’s account when the fictional crime fighter tweeted his name as part of the viral trend.

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The Washington Post, one of the most highly respected US news outlets, showed its lighter, perhaps funnier side, when it tweeted the word “news”.

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The social media team at NASA posted something out of this world when they sent the word “universe” to their more than 61 million followers.

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The Twitter account for the Marriott hotel company’s loyalty scheme got involved by tweeting “hotels”.

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Online marketing company Mailchimp was clearly monkeying around when it tweeted the word “emails”.

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US tech news website CNET couldn’t resist poking fun at Amtrak when it tweeted the word “tech”.

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National Public Radio in the US simply tweeted the word “radio”.

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These won’t be the only companies, or possibly even world leaders, taking part in the trend – so have fun spotting them!

Mark Gibson

Graduates in Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 1990. Move to Los Angeles California in 2004. Specialized in Internet journalism.

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