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The EuroTwitter Song Contest

The EuroTwitter Song Contest

The EuroTwitter Song Contest

Neighbouring countries tend to offer points to each other and there will be an eclectic mix of songs, anything from singing about a ‘moustache’ to ‘cheesecake’! But every year Eurovision is enjoyed by millions of people with an average TV audience of 125 million. Even a few days after eventual winner, the bearded lady Conchita Wurst from Austria, was crowned, headlines are still being generated. But has Eurovision fever translated online as well as in the press? Plusnet took a night out to investigate…

Tweeting records sent tumbling

Twitter exploded into life on Saturday evening from people discussing the acts and voting. Stats released show that 5.3m tweets were made, a record, with an average of 47,136 tweets per minute (that’s 785 per second!) when Conchita was announced the winner. Source: Twitter UK The official Eurovision Twitter and Facebook accounts also saw surges in traffic. 40,000 people followed the Twitter account on the day of the final, whilst 158,000 people liked the Facebook page during the week of the Contest.

Source: TwitterCounter/Facebook

On YouTube, the official account has swelled from 424,000 subscribers to 487,000 from the beginning of May this year, and 102% more than this time in 2013. 11 million views on Eurovision’s Official YouTube channel have also been made by people to the winning song. Eurovision expert Dr Paul Jordan, who has followed the contest live since 2000 and is also known as ‘Dr Eurovision’ due to his knowledge, explains:

“Internet has changed Eurovision massively. It's much more accessible, you no longer need to go to the show to feel part of it. Social media and things like YouTube have opened the contest up.”

But Dr Jordan, who did a PhD thesis at Glasgow University on Eurovision, did have some reservations about the effect of social media adding:

“with this comes almost saturation where everything is instant and nothing is kept as a surprise”.

What was trending on social media?

Denmark, the hosts, unsurprisingly had Eurovision trending number one and they were joined by the Spanish who had the hashtag #EurovisionTVE in their top trends. Inside the UK, a few cities had the competition trending though this picked up speed as various countries performed. A lot of people commented on the fact that a few of the songs sounded remarkably similar to existing songs (one similar to The Police for example). There was also a lot of love for the risqué entry from Poland, which got a lot of thumbs up on Twitter. Ireland and Belgium awarded the UK 7 and 8 points respectively, which caused the terms “Thanks Ireland” and “#8points” to start trending. And there was an element of patriotic spirit as Molly Smitten-Downes delivered her song with “Go Molly”, #GreatBritain and #UnitedKingdom all ranking at the same time.   And following victory, Conchita immediately began seeing memes created from her image following her victory, for example like Paddy Power’s below.  

Can social media influence voting now and in the future?

Whilst social media shows what people are talking about, it doesn’t translate necessarily to called votes. In addition to this, the way that voting is structured (with five judges having votes with a collective weighting equal to the public), it means that what the public like or vote for isn’t always going to get points. But Dr Jordan does believe that social media can help to give some insight into where points may be going:

“I think social media can help in this respect - Netherlands for example was favoured this year and you could see that through social media.”

And he also believes that social media can help acts in their promotion too:

“It [social media] can play an important role for marketing although as far as I'm aware, recent winners haven't needed it so much”.

But overall….

For some light-hearted entertainment wasn’t their cup of tea as the hashtag (note capitalisation for emphasis) #REALLYDONTCARE went into the top three trending terms on the night. We disagree but each to their own! Did you watch Eurovision and did you join in with the #Twitter discussions? Let us know your thoughts below  

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