Election Day on social media: Mentions of governance, Trudeau
In this file photo, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau poses for a selfie at the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama'at Conference, in Mississauga, Ont., on Saturday, Aug. 28, 2015. (Chris Young / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Published Tuesday, October 20, 2015 12:34AM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, October 20, 2015 1:19AM EDT
The federal election lit up Facebook, Twitter and Google with all kinds of chatter on Election Day, as people discussed the top issues facing Canadians ahead of the Liberals’ majority win Monday night.
Governance was the top issue discussed on Facebook on Monday, surpassing discussions about the economy for the first time since the campaign kicked off 78 days ago. The focus on governance suggests Canadians were weighing the value of a majority or minority government on the eve of the election, Facebook Canada’s Kevin Chan told CTVNews.ca.
In Quebec, Facebook recorded a spike in the discussion around Justin Trudeau, with the Liberal leader overtaking Stephen Harper to become the most-discussed party leader in the province. Chan says conversations about Trudeau spiked around the time polls closed on Monday, as Canadians returned home from the polls and posted about who they voted for. “We see Justin Trudeau spiking to the top,” Chan said.
Trudeau’s Liberals seized many of the Quebec seats formerly held by the NDP, who started the campaign with strong numbers in the province, before slipping in the polls toward the end of the race. Conversations surrounding NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair also slipped on Election Day, as he fell from the third-most mentioned leader to fourth that day, behind Bloc Quebecois Leader Gilles Duceppe. Conservative Leader Stephen Harper has been the most mentioned leader in Quebec through most of the campaign, before Trudeau surpassed him on Monday.
The top seven issues discussed on Facebook on Oct. 19 were:
- Social Issues
- Foreign Policy
- Government Benefits
Trudeau was also the top leader mentioned on Twitter, as of 12:30 a.m. on Tuesday. About 60 per cent of people mentioning a leader were mentioning Trudeau, while 27 per cent were discussing Harper and 8 per cent were discussing Mulcair.
In terms of parties mentioned, the Liberal Party’s hashtag, #LPC, was used 188,939 times, while the Conservatives’ #CPC appeared 95,777 times and #NDP appeared 62,285 times.
Facebook Canada reports 5.4 million users engaged with the federal election campaign between June 1 and Oct. 18, with 42 million interactions, or comments, shares and likes, recorded over that period of time.
Many Canadians turned to Google to inform themselves before heading to the polls on Monday, according to data from Google Canada. Top search terms included phrases like “How to vote,” “Where do I vote,” “Who is going to win the election” and “when do polls close.”
“Strategic voting” was also a hot search topic, with Google reporting a large spike in the search term, five times larger than the spikes recorded during the 2008 and 2011 elections.