Twitter has announced on their official communications twitter accounts that the December 9th Friday Night Roadshow airing of Hayao Miyazaki's Laputa: Castle in the Sky led to a new all time record of 25,088 tweets per second. While not specifically said, the known cause of this spike in traffic was due to a large number of people tweeting "Balse" (バルス) at approximately 11:22pm in Japan, the same moment it was said by the characters in the movie. Despite airing on NTV, broadcaster NHK's official PR twitter account even decided it wanted to join in.
Soon after the airing, the third party Twitter traffic monitoring site tweetcounter had reported seeing a spike up to 14,594 tweets per second worldwide and 11,349 tweets per second within Japan at approximately 11:22pm. Tweetcounter has posted graphs of their data, and even a video of the traffic, on their blog.
This massive traffic spike was partially spontaneous and was partially an organized attempt to set new posting records and take down servers, since "Balse" is the spell of destruction, with detailed descriptions of the exact second timing being tweeted and posted to 2ch.
The previous event which held the record for the most tweets per second was the announcement of Beyonce's pregnancy with 8868 tweets per second. For another comparison, New Year's Eve had 6939 tweets per second last year according to Twitter Japan's blog, and is expected to set a new record this year.
Image ©Nibariki, Studio Ghibli