Report: Republicans utilize Twitter more — and more effectively — than Democrats

posted at 7:17 pm on March 26, 2012 by Tina Korbe

Republican members of Congress use Twitter more effectively than Democrats, according to a study by Edelman Digital cited in Roll Call:

Studying 456 Congressional Twitter accounts, the firm found that Republicans are exceeding on all the “success metrics”: engagement, mentions, amplification and follower growth.

Congressional Republicans on Twitter have their tweets replied to twice as often as Democrats and are mentioned more often.

Republicans also had an edge in analyses done through TweetLevel, a tool built by Edelman to score levels of “influence,” “engagement,” “popularity” and “trust” on Twitter — though liberal Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who caucuses with Democrats, had the highest ratings for “influence” and “engagement.”

Republicans tweeted 52 percent more links than Democrats and mentioned specific pieces of legislation 3.5 times more than their colleagues across the aisle. They also used more hashtags than Democrats — a way to help elevate the visibility of certain keywords and causes — and included pictures and videos to make their communications more colorful.

Roll Call was quick to point out that “there’s nothing inherently ideological about such activities,” and they’re right; Democrats could use Twitter as effectively as Republicans. Yet, it doesn’t surprise me that they don’t condescend to interact with “ordinary” men and women more often through a messy medium like Twitter. Twitter might just be an inherently conservative medium, in the sense that it respects the individual first and foremost and in the sense that it is for “the masses.” Conservatives traditionally have more respect for the individual and for the way “the masses” work to satisfy their own needs and desires. So it makes sense we’d find beauty in the way people meet their own communication needs through Twitter. We tweet to hear ourselves affirmed and so meet our need for affirmation. We tweet a question to have it answered and so meet our need for information. We tweet to test a thought and so meet our need for constructive criticism. We ourselves are our own starting point, but, by putting our ideas forward, we also contribute to the needs of others. We need no middle man and we need no one to tell us who the “experts” are. It’s a free exchange of ideas.

This isn’t an unqualified endorsement of Twitter, though. I sense rather than know and can articulate that there’s a significant downside to it, as well. Still, it’s worth exploring — and it’s to Republicans’ credit that they’ve sought to use Twitter to positive effect.

P.S. If you’re so inclined, please follow me @TinaKorbe. Twitter is flat-out the most fun place to talk with strangers!


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Who knew there was such a strong presence of 14 year old girls in the Republican party?

JohnGalt23 on March 26, 2012 at 7:18 PM

A really good lie takes more than 140 words…..

BigWyo on March 26, 2012 at 7:19 PM

I’m sure it’s because we’re a bunch of simpletons, and their complex, nuanced genius thoughts need more than 140 cha..zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Kensington on March 26, 2012 at 7:21 PM

Peeps

Schadenfreude on March 26, 2012 at 7:21 PM

In fairness, the Republicans have had President Obama during most of the Twitter era, while Democrats have had…President Obama.

HitNRun on March 26, 2012 at 7:22 PM

I think we all knew this after the Anthony Weiner debacle

NerwenAldarion on March 26, 2012 at 7:22 PM

Twitter is flat-out the most fun place to talk with strangers!

That’s because you can’t jump into the Hot Gas swamp with us anonymites.

John the Libertarian on March 26, 2012 at 7:22 PM

If that’s the case, then they should start mass-tweeting this ASAP:

Gen45: GOP 2012 (click to see graphic).

Zombie on March 26, 2012 at 7:23 PM

After reading the tweets of martin posted at the Daily Caller, I have to agree with OBOZO – he’s what we expect from the son he never had!

TeaPartyNation on March 26, 2012 at 7:23 PM

Who knew there was such a strong presence of 14 year old girls in the Republican party?

JohnGalt23 on March 26, 2012 at 7:18 PM

There’s some very strong conservatives who use twitter to get the message out very effectively. Andrew Breitbart used it very effectively against MMFA and other idiot liberals.

One person on twitter the last few days (Brooks Bayne) has been re-tweeting a lot of death threats and call for lynching (yes, I used that word because there were calls to hang Zimmerman by various body parts) of Zimmerman.

Spike Lee used twitter to start this attempt at “getting” Zimmerman by tweeting the man’s address.

So no, it’s not just 14 year old girls. It can be very serious people using it in a very serious manner.

kim roy on March 26, 2012 at 7:24 PM

LeftyTwitInCapable….who knew!!!!

canopfor on March 26, 2012 at 7:24 PM

See…..Lib/Dem/PinkoCommies/Progtards…are stuck in the 1800′s after all!
(sarc)

canopfor on March 26, 2012 at 7:25 PM

It’s simple: when leftist ideas are actually written down, the true stupidity of them becomes glaringly evident.

Rebar on March 26, 2012 at 7:26 PM

You forget Anthony Weiner. Oh, wait a minute…

Rixon on March 26, 2012 at 7:27 PM

Republican members of Congress use Twitter more effectively than Democrats

In the interest of equality, I submit there is a pressing need for a Twitter Fairness Doctrine?

It’s high time the Twitter community was properly organized.

MessesWithTexas on March 26, 2012 at 7:30 PM

P.S. If you’re so inclined, please follow me @TinaKorbe. Twitter is flat-out the most fun place to talk with strangers!

This is absolutely true. Twitter is now functioning as a ‘real time’ national chat room for Conservatives.

People I follow on Twitter:

Tina Korbe
Ed Morrissey
Ben Shapiro
Adam Baldwin
Lee Stranahan
Joel Pollak
Ace of Spades
Ann Coulter
Michelle Malkin
Sarah Palin
Dana Loesch
Jim Treacher
Iowahawk
Mary Katherine Ham
Laura Ingraham
Jammie Wearing Fool
Dan Riehl
Mark Steyn
Rush Limbaugh
Matt Drudge…and about 100 others.

Somebody is always saying something interesting. I probably need to quit following so many people, because in about 3 hours there will be over 200 new tweets to go through. A couple of new ones every minute.

Oh and follow me too if you want, I’m new political blogger:

@drawandstrike

My blog: http://drawandstrike.blogspot.com/

manofaiki on March 26, 2012 at 7:31 PM

Democrats just say the same things over and over again, expecting that repeating something makes it true. That’s not really worth following.

RBMN on March 26, 2012 at 7:34 PM

Oh boy,here comes the whinning,from da Left,in that
they will seek InEquality for Twittering!!
(sarc)

canopfor on March 26, 2012 at 7:34 PM

My favorite tweeter is Iowahawk. Funny stuff right there.

Bmore on March 26, 2012 at 7:35 PM

Bullchit. I am a Twitter Jedi.
/Anthony Weiner

Southernblogger on March 26, 2012 at 7:37 PM

Shut Ins.

KeninCT on March 26, 2012 at 7:40 PM

A really good lie takes more than 140 words…..

BigWyo on March 26, 2012 at 7:19 PM

Exception: “The baby is yours”

Chuck Schick on March 26, 2012 at 7:40 PM

Heartache

KOOLAID2 on March 26, 2012 at 7:42 PM

Shut Ins.

KeninCT on March 26, 2012 at 7:40 PM

Says the 39 year old on the free dating site who “likes chick flicks”.

Chuck Schick on March 26, 2012 at 7:42 PM

O/T,Speaking of Twittering,er InstaGrams!
—————————————–

Newt Gingrich speaking at a Delaware GOP event
Submitted 1 min ago from instagr.am

http://www.breakingnews.com/
============================

Newt speaks to 300+ ppl at DE GOP event #decision2012”

http://instagr.am/p/Ip3_aiTAmI/

canopfor on March 26, 2012 at 7:46 PM

Shut Ins.

KeninC_ _T on March 26, 2012 at 7:40 PM

…we haven’t decided yet if you have an ‘innie’ or an ‘outie’…so don’t shut anything in yet…we don’t want you to hurt yourself. We’re compassionate conservatives!

KOOLAID2 on March 26, 2012 at 7:46 PM

So what? They also utilize reality shows more effectively. Fits in the same culture.

lester on March 26, 2012 at 7:51 PM

Twitter is lame.

Rusty Allen on March 26, 2012 at 7:55 PM

That’s because the Left can’t state a coherent thought in 1400 characters, much less 144.

Dark Star on March 26, 2012 at 7:56 PM

Alinksy

/Brietbart is Here

Key West Reader on March 26, 2012 at 7:57 PM

My blog: http://drawandstrike.blogspot.com/

Good blog. I enjoyed it very much!

congma on March 26, 2012 at 8:06 PM

Shut Ins.

KeninCT on March 26, 2012 at 7:40 PM

My mom warned me about children like you.

Key West Reader on March 26, 2012 at 8:08 PM

Who knew there was such a strong presence of 14 year old girls in the Republican party?

JohnGalt23 on March 26, 2012 at 7:18 PM

That’s right, the tough guys are all in the, um, blog comments.

Jim Treacher on March 26, 2012 at 8:11 PM

I only recently started using Twitter. I love how it isn’t insular. The recent “hijackings” of hash tags indicate to me that you have to expect to be challenged, and that’s healthy. @JHartEllis

theperfecteconomist on March 26, 2012 at 8:12 PM

Democrats, of course, are far more likely to accidentally tweet out pictures of their dork.

Red Cloud on March 26, 2012 at 8:21 PM

I am not surprised. This is happening for the same reason that socialism doesn’t work on talk radio. You have to be clear, concise, and make a point on Twitter. It is a TEXT medium. It doesn’t use pictures or video, which makes it easier to convey EMOTION.

wildcat72 on March 26, 2012 at 8:21 PM

I read it mainly for the snark. The #obamacaresforme and #gen44 comments today were good for a few laughs.

The left is getting absolutely p0wned on the tweeter. Hilarious to watch hash after hash getting hijacked for the general derision of lefty ideology. Fun stuff.

Lost in Jersey on March 26, 2012 at 8:29 PM

Republican members of Congress use Twitter more effectively than Democrats

That’s giving the politicians too much credit. Twitter is fertile ground for Republicans because grassroots conservatives use Twitter so effectively.

RightKlik on March 26, 2012 at 8:48 PM

Democrats, of course, are far more likely to accidentally tweet out pictures of their dork.

Red Cloud on March 26, 2012 at 8:21 PM

Accidentaly? Weiner Tweeter LOL!!!

Roy Rogers on March 26, 2012 at 8:59 PM

I am not surprised. This is happening for the same reason that socialism doesn’t work on talk radio. You have to be clear, concise, and make a point on Twitter. It is a TEXT medium. It doesn’t use pictures or video, which makes it easier to convey EMOTION.

wildcat72 on March 26, 2012 at 8:21 PM

I see. Is that why Fox “News” is so popular?

lester on March 26, 2012 at 9:05 PM

So Good I read it twice, I found it thoughtful.

boogaleesnots on March 26, 2012 at 9:13 PM

Just check out #ILikeObamaCare and #Gen44 on how well it works for the Democrats.

LoganSix on March 26, 2012 at 10:03 PM

Wow, and to think, the Dems lay claim to the Dem who claims to have invented the Internet so you’d think they’d have every angle of it covered. But i guess all the little leftistproblibturd tweeters aren’t much interested in politricks and are probably more busy with celebrity twits, uh, tweets.

stukinIL4now on March 26, 2012 at 11:40 PM

Who needs tweeter when you have NBC, MSNBC, ABC, CBS, ABC, CNN, HLN, PBS, NYT, WP,HollyWood, Music, Video Games, Politico………. etc, etc, etc…

Y314K on March 26, 2012 at 11:44 PM

Bullchit. I am a Twitter Jedi.
/Anthony Weiner

Southernblogger on March 26, 2012 at 7:37 PM

Kinda lacking the the “light saber” department, aren’t you?

The Honey Badger

The Honey Badger on March 27, 2012 at 6:26 AM

I do find this interesting, considering how famously bad a job the GOP does in reaching out to and employing other New Media elements like blogs.

dougwinship on March 27, 2012 at 7:54 AM

>>> I do find this interesting, considering how famously bad a job the GOP does in reaching out to and employing other New Media elements like blogs.<<<

Conservatives have been fairly quick getting into the blogosphere, but not especially good at rhetoric (or responding to rhetoric, or responding to logical fallacies and bumper-sticker arguments). Once the Quality came up, Conservatives became more popular, then quality improved, etc. [insert snowball graphic]

Now if we can just get the GOP to be more Conservative…

stevehorth on March 27, 2012 at 12:50 PM

Republicans utilize Twitter …

Really? They don’t just “use” it. Where are we? At a really bad institution of tertiary education in, say, 1997?

JackieB on March 27, 2012 at 1:43 PM