Tweets-Per-Second Record Reportedly Shattered by Chinese Microblogging Service

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If you thought that Twitter’s record of 25,088 tweets per second was impressive, you’ve clearly been spending the New Year with the wrong crowd. This weekend’s Chinese New Year celebrations saw 481,207 messages sent via Sina Weibo, the Chinese alternative to Twitter, in the first minute of the year — an average of 32,312 messages per second.

According to a report from Do News, the traffic on the microblogging service was three times the size of the same period last year, mapping with a recent report from the China Internet Network Information Services that Weibo has seen 296% growth during 2011.

(MORE: Chinese Microblogging Site Bans ‘Occupy’ Search Terms)

Almost half of all Chinese net users signed up to a microblogging service: Sina Weibo has 250 million users, with an estimated 100 million of them active per day; its main competitor, Tencent Weibo, is even more popular with 300 million users.

Asia is clearly the largest market for microblogging networks currently. In addition to the impressive stats behind Sina Weibo’s new record, it’s worth remembering that Twitter’s most-tweeted-about event was a television screening of Castle In The Sky in Japan last month.

America, we’re falling down on the job, apparently.

MORE: First Privacy, Now Censorship: Will Twitter Continue to Stand Up for Its Users’ Rights?

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.