By Kirsten Kamerman, Account Executive and New Media Director
Last night, President Barack Obama delivered the State of the Union Address and today you will be reading lots of stories on how well President Obama did. However, if you were on Twitter last night, your feed was likely abuzz with tweets about the address.
Twitter has released the metrics on how many people were tweeting last night about the address, as well as what they were saying. Twitter users sent a total of 766, 681 tweets from the moment the president entered the chamber until the conclusion of the Republican response. During the event, Twitter promoted five official hashtags which were: #jobs, #manufacturing, #energy, #education and #fairness. Predictably, those were among the more popular topics of the evening, with #education being the number one hashtag with 35,972 tweets.
The official Twitter account of the president provided live tweets during the entire speech while numerous media outlets and Twitter users participated in the State of the Union Address tweet up. For those unfamiliar with these terms, live tweeting is when you tweet for a continuous period of time about a live event as it is happening and a tweet up is when people come together and meet in person, then tweet about the same topic together.
So why care about these tweets? This real-time information plays an extremely important role in how the public gets the majority of their news. Rather than traditional media waiting to break news in the following morning’s newspaper headlines, stories are breaking in real-time through social media. Social media is becoming increasingly more important to learn what is going around the world and it is not going away. In my opinion, it is the best type of reporting we have. If anything, the State of the Union Address’s twitter activity only further proves that social media is here to stay and that news and public opinion will come from these outlets as they happen.