A small variety of prolific U.S. Twitter customers create nearly all of tweets, and that extends to Twitter discussions round politics, in keeping with a new report from the Pew Research Center out in the present day. Constructing on an earlier study which found that 10% of customers created 80% of tweets from U.S. adults, the group in the present day says that simply 6% of U.S. adults on Twitter account for 73% of tweets about nationwide politics.
Although your expertise on Twitter might differ, primarily based on who you comply with, nearly all of Twitter customers don’t point out politics of their tweets.
The truth is, Pew discovered that 69% by no means tweeted about politics or tweeted in regards to the subject simply as soon as. In the meantime, throughout all tweets from U.S. adults, solely 13% of tweets have been centered on nationwide politics.
The examine was primarily based on 1.1 million public tweets from June 2018 to June 2019, Pew says. 2,427 customers participated.
Just like its earlier report about how prolific customers dominate the general dialog, Pew discovered there’s additionally a small group of very lively Twitter customers dominating the dialog about nationwide politics — and so they all are typically heavy information customers and extra polarized of their viewpoints.
Solely 22% of U.S. adults actually have a Twitter account, and of these, solely 31% are outlined as “political tweeters” — that’s, they’ve posted at the least 5 tweets and have posted at the least twice about politics in the course of the examine interval.
Inside this broader group of political tweeters, simply 6% are outlined as “prolific” — that means they’ve posted at the least 10 tweets and at the least 25% of their tweets point out nationwide politics.
This small subset then goes on to create 73% of all tweets from U.S. adults with regards to nationwide politics.
What’s regarding in regards to the knowledge is that it’s those that are both far to the left or far to the proper who’re those dominating the political dialog on Twitter’s platform. A majority of the prolific political tweeters (55%) say they determine as both “very liberal” or “very conservative.” Among the many non-political tweeting crowd, solely 28% selected a extra polarized label for themselves.
This polarized subgroup additionally closely leans left. For instance, those that strongly approve of President Trump generated 25% of all tweets mentioning nationwide politics. However those that strongly disapprove of Trump generated 72% of all tweets mentioning nationwide politics. (They’re additionally liable for 80% of all tweets from U.S. adults on the platform.)
This isn’t a completely consultant image of U.S. politics. The share of U.S. adults on Twitter who strongly disapprove of Trump (55%) is 7 share factors greater than the share of most people that holds this view (48%).
Trump supporters, in consequence, are under-represented on Twitter. Maybe it is because they’ve flocked to alternate platforms; or as a result of don’t tweet their views as typically in public; or as a result of they violate Twitter’s insurance policies extra typically, leading to bans. Or as is probably going, it’s a mixture of things. In any occasion, the reasoning was past the scope of this examine.
The examine additionally discovered the prolific tweeters are extremely engaged with the information cycle. 92% comply with the information “more often than not,” in comparison with 58% of non-prolific political tweeters and 53% of non-political tweeters. They’re additionally civically engaged, as 34% have attended a political rally or occasion, 57% have contacted an elected official, and 38% have donated to campaigns.
Additionally of be aware, the political tweets usually tend to come from older customers. These ages 65 and older produce solely 10% of all tweets from U.S. adults, however they contribute 33% of tweets associated to nationwide politics. And people 50 and older produce 29% of all tweets however contribute 73% of tweets mentioning nationwide politics.
These political tweeters additionally create so-called “filter bubbles” the place they largely comply with individuals who suppose the identical as they do. 45% of Democrats stated they did this, in contrast with 25% of Republicans. Throughout all U.S. adults, 31% of Democrats stated they did this, versus 15% of Republicans.
However there may be one factor a majority of U.S. Twitter customers can agree on: most (57%) consider any information they see on social media is “largely inaccurate.”
The total report is on the market here.