Most of my analysis to date has focused on the national level conversation, channels, issues and languages. It’s time to look at what the provinces are talking about.

The analysis that follows looks at Twitter traffic from April 24 through April 26 inclusive and only consider provinces in which traffic exceeds 1% of the share of Canadian election tweets over that period. It’s also worth noting that I’m only able to consider tweets by users who have identified their province in the location field of their Twitter profile. Therefore, my research does not include tweets from (hypothetically) someone in Nova Scotia who identities their location as “Milky Way” or a journalist whose location is Tehran.

Provincial share of voice

Some context to start… there were 45,442 election tweets for April 24 through April 26, 2011. How does that breakout by provinces with more than 1% share of voice for that period?

Province/Territory Tweets Share of Voice
British Columbia 6,670 14.7%
Alberta 5,340 11.8%
Ontario 19,560 43.0%
Québéc 3,645 8.0%
New Brunswick 892 1.9%
Nova Scotia 1,512 3.3%

Notable provincial statistics

  • New Brunswick and Nova Scotia had the greatest percentage of engagement among tweeters (28% of the NB tweets). Ontario tweeters were the least engaged (19% of ON tweets).
  • Ontario tweeters rely on retweets, the amplifier effect, to fan out messages from the epicentre (44% of ON tweets). Nova Scotians had the lowest retweet rate (34% of NS tweets).
  • Québéc tweeters produce the greatest percentage of original content (39% of QC tweets). New Brunswick tweeters produced the smallest portion of original content (35% of NB tweets).

Canada

Most of the conversation hinges on poll results and the 34.5% increase in voter participation in the advanced polls. Call it Canadian pride rather than obsession with leaders and parties. At the national level, chatter about the surge in NDP popularity is trailing off.

Key conversations

  • Advanced polls including reports 2 million advance poll voters, a 34.5% increase in voter turnout
  • NDP popularity including Globe and Mail reports the party is winning support from right and left sides of the political spectrum
  • Elizabeth May taking the lead in Saanich-Gulf Islands
  • Some discussions about proportional representation
  • Strategic voting only working in ridings with competitive races

British Columbia

British Columbian tweeters have incorporated link sharing in many of their updates. The most active theme is the absence of Stephen Harper and Tony Clement from an open survey of Canada’s Digital Future Survey.

Key conversations

  • Public call for participation of Stephen Harper and Tony Clement, both missing from @OpenMedia_ca’s Digital Future Survey
  • Globe and mail report on surge in NDP support from those on right and left
  • Attack ads, particularly intrigue over CPC attacks on NDP
  • Bernardo stalker booted from Tory campaign
  • Contempt of Parliament including links to definition of contempt
  • Suggestions Stephen Harper is desperate for a majority
  • Elizabeth May leading in Saanich-Gulf Islands
  • The book of contentious quotes by Stephen Harper

Alberta

Albertan tweeters have incorporated link sharing in many of their updates. The most active theme is the absence of Stephen Harper and Tony Clement from an open survey of Canada’s Digital Future Survey.

Key conversations

  • Public call for participation of Stephen Harper and Tony Clement, both missing from @OpenMedia_ca’s Digital Future Survey
  • Advanced polls including reports 2 million advance poll voters, a 34.5% increase in voter turnout
  • Predictions of a Conservative majority
  • Globe and Mail reports on Harper quotes, Canada labelled as ‘immoral asbestos pusher’, and surge in NDP popularity
  • Results of latest EKOS poll
  • Upset over skew towards family and pension rather than youth issues
  • Pride in youth participation

Ontario

The most dominant Twitter threads in Ontario were about voter turnout and poll results than partisan politics.

Key conversations

  • Advanced polls including reports 2 million advance poll voters, a half-million/34.5% increase in voter turnout
  • Angus Reid poll results
  • Jack Layton’s increase in popularity, ‘rolling up the rim’ to victory
  • Elizabeth May leading in Saanich-Gulf Islands

Québéc

Not surprisingly, Twitter discussion in Québéc hinged largely on the NDP’s surge in popularity in the province.

Key conversations

  • Despite surge in popularity, there is concern Québécois interests are not a priority of the NDP party
  • Lack of awareness of Québéc issues among CPC, LPC and NDP and concern about defending Québéc culture in Ottawa

New Brunswick

New Brunswickers were taken by advanced poll participation rates.

Key conversations

  • Advanced polls including reports 2 million advance poll voters, a half-million/34.5% increase in voter turnout
  • EKOS poll results
  • Public call for participation of Stephen Harper and Tony Clement, both missing from @OpenMedia_ca’s Digital Future Survey
  • Book of Stephen Harper’s controversial quotes

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotian Tweeters were taken by the surge in NDP popularity and participation rates at the advanced polls. They also shared a link to the countdown of the top 100 political songs.

Key conversations

  • NDP seat projections
  • Advanced polls including reports 2 million advance poll voters, a half-million/34.5% increase in voter turnout
  • Countdown of the top 100 political songs
  • Public call for participation of Stephen Harper and Tony Clement, both missing from @OpenMedia_ca’s Digital Future Survey
  • Book of Stephen Harper’s controversial quotes (quote)