The number of people who have registered accounts on Twitter has now surpassed 200 million, a representative of the company said publicly yesterday. Katie Stanton, Twitter's VP of International Strategy, said at the Guardian Activate conference in New York that there are now more than 200 million Twitter accounts worldwide and more than 70% of all Twitter's traffic comes from outside the U.S. That means Stanton's job is very important and whatever her International Strategy is, it seems to be working. Roughly 25% of all tweets come from Japan alone, she said.

Twitter said last month that it was adding just under a half million new accounts per day and its business-facing page says there are 175 million registered users.

Independent research by the blog Business Insider concluded last month that there are 56 million people who are following 8 or more other people on Twitter, a number that site used to estimate the number of active Twitter users. Twitter typically doesn't comment on third party estimates regarding its users or their engagement. The company is focused on a long-term strategy of emphasizing read-only use cases for its service, as a means of increasing its user retention. Facebook's user numbers are several times higher than Twitter's.

The Huffington Post's Bianca Bosker wrote first about Stanton's public statement of 200 million registered users last night. We've requested comment from Twitter PR and have not yet received a reply; presumably the company will make a formal announcement soon. Update: Twitter PR responded to my inquiry by email just as I put this post up and said that this was not the first time these numbers have been discussed publicly and that neither number is in fact new. If anyone can find me a link to a report online about that number as a fact and not an estimate or fast-approaching number of registered users - I will say very nice things about you. I certainly looked, myself, before writing this.

You can follow me on Twitter here and the whole ReadWriteWeb team here. Only a portion so far of the 200 million people registered to use Twitter have discovered the joy that comes from engaging with us on Twitter yet, but we consider each and every one of you who has to be absolutely precious. New friends should come and join us there; we can chat about current events, fascinating things we find to read online and what we all ate for breakfast.