When President Barack Obama asked Twitter to join him for a virtual town hall meeting by tweeting him questions using the hashtag #AskObama, it’s possible he was expecting a few people to join him. What he got was an impressive 169,395 tweets, and enough new followers that he broke the 9 million barrier for the first time.
Of the nearly 170,000 questions, the four biggest topics were jobs (18,957 tweets), the budget (15,000 tweets), taxes (14,777 tweets) and education (8,833 tweets). According to stats provided by TwitSprout, the majority of the #AskObama tweets were questions (around 64%, with the rest promotion or retweets), with most tweets coming from the East Coast (34%).
One user, @WashingtonDCTea, seemed particularly excited about the event, sending over 173 tweets to the president.
Sadly, the President didn’t answer all 169,395 tweets during the event; 18 were selected by Twitter’s Executive Chairman Jack Dorsey and then asked face-to-face, before the replies were summarized by @whitehouse for the users’ edification. Maybe next time, he can set aside a few more hours to answer everyone individually. After all, it’s not like he’s got anything more pressing to do, right…?
Graeme McMillan is a reporter at TIME. Find him on Twitter at @Graemem or on Facebook at Facebook/Graeme.McMillan. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.