Recent statements tied to the Idle No More movement combined with observed trends in online activity over the last two weeks suggested the movement might be tapping in to a new source of energy. It seemed the movement was kicking off a new phase with events such as the Day of Resurgence, the arrival of the Journey of Nishiyuu walkers in Ottawa and the start of a new walk from Winnipeg. There are other notable activities which seemed well-positioned to energize the movement as well.
Oddly, the start of Elder Raymond Robinson’s full hunger strike on April 2 barely registered in the chatter. It wasn’t until Aboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Valcourt reportedly laughed at Elder Robinson during their Friday afternoon meeting that online outrage caused the first noticeable bump in IdleNoMore traffic for the week. Even with that surge, there was a 26% decrease in all online mentions since last week’s analysis (from 17,739 last week to 13,084 this).
What follows is the analysis of Idle No More online activity for March 31 through April 6, inclusive. Analysis was performed using Marketwired/Sysomos Heartbeat.
Posting a rise in activity:
Posing a fall in activity:
- YouTube mentions down 68% (195 last week, 63 this)
- News mentions down 67% (from 461 to 154)
- Facebook mentions down 39% (from 152 to 92)
- Blog mentions down 37% (from 256 to 161)
- Twitter mentions down 25% (from 16,410 to 12,362)
- Forum mentions, including Reddit, down 1% (from 256 to 252)
It’s worth noting Facebook changed its search functions recently which may be contributing to apparent declining activity on that service.
The 12,362 tweets issued this past week came from 3,778 unique Twitter accounts; an average of 3.3 tweets per account. This represents a 26% decrease in participation from the previous week. It also indicates a 3% increase in average individual contributions by participants.
The three Twitter accounts which issued the most tweets tagged #IdleNoMore, #NativeWinter or including the text “Idle No More” were @teamrevoltnow (1,265 tweets, down from 1,419 last week), @makwanimosh (218) and @idlenomoreyeg (182, down from 202). They combine for 1,665 tweets or 13% of relevant tweets for the week.
To contextualize their contributions, @teamrevoltnow issued the equivalent of 180 tweets on average for each day last week, @indigorave 31 and @idlenomoreyeg 26.
Only 67% of online mentions of Idle No More last week originated in Canada; 28% of which comes from Ontario (the most active province). The United States accounts for 25% of all traffic. The UK and China follow with 2% each.
A rise in male-sourced online mentions last week led to a more gender-neutral 51:49 male:female split this week. Last week’s analysis showed a 48:52 male:female split.
While Idle No More activity included mentions of Elder Robinson’s hunger strike, that activity figured more in high volumes of isolated chatter rather than ongoing connected conversations. In fact, the conversations covered a variety of topics including the pipeline spills, blockades, robocalls and a video featuring a short speech by young Ta’Kaiya Blaney. As of the time this post was prepared, the video had been viewed 16,788 times.
The following buzzgraph illustrates the connection between key terms in the most active conversations. The stronger the connection between the words, the thicker and bolder the connection line. There are three levels of connection illustrated by a thick solid line (strong), a thin solid line (medium) and a thin broken line (light). The Buzzgraph that follows shows only two degrees of connection during the election campaign — strong and light.
Last week’s top tweet was issued by Anonymous. The tweet featuring a link to a video has been retweeted 211 times and 132 people indicated it as a favourite. As of the time of this post, the video has been viewed 9,900 times.