The flatlining of Twitter's growth
It's a lot to expect for one simple graph to tell you all you need to know about the state of a vast and rapidly-expanding sector. But this chart comes close to achieving that.
In social networking it's been growth all the way until now. Facebook's relentless rise, the dramatic climb of Instagram and WeChat, the stellar performance of WhatsApp.
But what hits you between the eyes from this new chart of active users is the unmistakable flatlining of Twitter's growth, and the stark contrast of that fact to the other players.
After it reported its slowest quarterly revenue growth since going public in 2013, and poor third-quarter revenue guidance on top of that, Twitter's stock went down 12 percent. Its stock is down 31% this year.
The market sees Twitter as struggling against the likes of Google and Facebook who are taking the lion's share of digital advertising spend.
Unable to match the continued user growth of the others, Twitter has been working on repositioning itself as a home for breaking news and live streaming of video, particularly sports content. It has many challenges. Here are four at a glance: attracting TV ad budgets, clamping down on user abuse, finding some user growth and, of course, solving profitability.
You could conjure up dozens of charts and many pages of commentary on these topics, but you'd probably keep coming back to the above image. One picture. Who needs a thousand words?