picture-51British social media company Fav.or.it wants to own retweets, the short messages on Twitter that are copied from other users. The company says its Tweetmeme button (below) is shown more than 50 million times a day across the web and is now supported in RSS feeds and e-mail.

imagebuttonData on retweets, which are a way to share links and ideas on Twitter, is valuable because it’s a barometer for popular content on the microblogging service and more broadly, on the real-time web. This could give Tweetmeme a leg up in the real-time search space, where a variety of competitors are vying to offer an engine that doesn’t just show what’s relevant for all-time like Google, but what’s important for a given search term now. Indeed, Tweetmeme has pulled ahead of all of the recently launched competitors we profiled last month (here and here) in monthly uniques, according to Compete.com.

Tweetmeme also upgraded its WordPress plug-in to give a more detailed breakdown on how blogged content is shared. It shows a 24-hour retweet graph and a list of all Twitter accounts that shared your content.

Fav.or.it has raised 650,000 pounds in two rounds of angel funding.