In the Game of Social Thrones
Game of Thrones is once again a trending topic, so perhaps it was only inevitable that an article would surface comparing the current state of social media platforms to the incredibly popular franchise. Ching Ching Wang’s post, “Twitter is reaching its Game of Thrones bloodbath ending”, was an entertaining and insightful read into the decaying platform. In this blog, Ching Ching Wang claims that President Trump “is the Night King, who slayed House Twitter”, but I beg to differ. If the 2017 Sensis is to be believed, in the passing year, Twitter has gained traction within the Australian community, rising from 19% of Australians to 32%.
It seems more Aussies have flocked to the platform since it became a more visual based platform. But is this the only reason it has suddenly gained popularity? Just four years ago, Twitter was used by as little as 16% of the Australian population. So why the sudden increase, especially with those aged 18-29? The Sensis suggests that perhaps the more direct nature of Twitter appealed to those who abandoned Facebook because of “nonsense, pointless, boring and distracting” content. Those accessing the platform daily has risen significantly, from 26% of users to 67%. In saying this, however, Twitter also holds the highest drop off rate of all the social platforms. Whilst it is gaining in popularity, it is unable to maintain users at the level of others.
So why are Australians using Twitter? 16% of users follow brands and businesses, with a surge in the fashion and clothing industry. The trending hashtags of 2016 further debates Ching Ching Wang’s theory that the negativity rife on the platform, because of Trump and political based postsm has pushed people away with six of the ten circling the cesspool of politics; #auspol, #ausvotes, #QandA, #Brexit, #ElectionNight, and #AustraliaDay. The ‘Golden Tweet’, the most retweeted post of all, was @Pazmee’s “tell me again how rape and sexual assault accusations will ruin a man’s career” tweet on the US #ElectionNight.
Politics may be killing Twitter usage in the United States, but it seems to be driving the growth of the platform in the land down under. Furthermore, a study by the Victoria University after the US election determined that Australians are overwhelmingly positive on the platform, tweeting words of goodwill, encouragement and ‘looking on the brightside’. It would seem that Australians are beginning to voice their opinions louder than ever, engaging in international discussion and world politics, and Twitter is the perfect platform from which to do this.
- Ashayla Webster, Social Community Manager
- “Sensis Social Media Report 2017”. 2017. https://www.sensis.com.au/asset/PDFdirectory/Sensis_Social_Media_Report_2017-Chapter-1.pdf.
- “Australians On Twitter Were ‘Positive’ About The US Election Of Donald Trump”. 2017. The Conversation. http://theconversation.com/australians-on-twitter-were-positive-about-the-us-election-of-donald-trump-71476.
- “#Thishappened On Twitter In Australia In 2016″. 2017. Blog.Twitter.Com. https://blog.twitter.com/official/en_au/a/2016/thishappened-on-twitter-in-australia-in-2016.html.