To most of the world, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield is known as Commander Hadfield. The truly geeky know him as @cmdr_hadfield. The latter is his Twitter handle; a handle that’s as celebrated as the man himself. And, let me say this… we Canadians are mighty proud of our Commander Hadfield in a way we probably haven’t felt since Marc Garneau became the first Canadian in space nearly 30 years ago.
My friend Dennis Van Staalduinen (pronounced stahl-dine-in) kicked off a conversation with the Tweets in space: Col. Chris Hadfield takes Social Media higher post to his blog, yesterday. That led to a discussion about the amount of chatter the Commander is inspiring. His breathtaking photos, videos, reflections, live chats and music have energized and inspired a far reaching conversation.
You could say Commander Hadfield is quickly becoming to space/humanity geeks what Justin Bieber has become for young pop music fans. Commander Hadfield is cooler and smarter, though. Just sayin’.
I was asked to pull together some statistics on the Commander’s Twitter following. Evan Hadfield, the Commander’s son, is also sharing some stats online through his Twitter account, @evan_hadfield. Thanks for sharing the data and your dad with us!
The graphs and charts that follow were generated using Sysomos MAP. They focus on Twitter which is where most of the activity is taking place over the period of December 20 through February 14 inclusive (which means the activity for February 14 is incomplete; I generated the reports at 8:00amET). I threw in a quick analysis of blog posts which mention the Commander’s Twitter handle.
There is plenty of sharing and chatting taking place on Facebook (but Facebook’s recent changes to their API are affecting search results), Reddit and other digital gathering places, as well.