40pc of TDs among the Twitterati

14 Oct 2010

Research carried out by PR firm Murray Consultants has found that four-out-of-ten TDs are using social media site Twitter.

The statistics reveal that Twitter has become the mainstream form of political communication for this percentage of TD, who use the site to keep their followers up to date on their activities.

Almost 40pc of TDs (63 out of 163) use Twitter accounts, which represents 39pc of the total. 

The research found that of all those using the social media site, Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Eamon Ryan, is fleets ahead with the most followers (2,385), while second and third place are closely contested between Green Party TD, Ciaran Cuffe (1,936) and Fianna Fáil Deputy, Chris Andrews TD (1,834).

100pc Twitter presence

The Green party hold a 100pc Twitter presence, the Labour Party, 75pc, and while Fine Gael’s presence on the site stands at 37pc, 10pc more than Fianna Fáil, Enda Kenny’s following leave’s him in 8th place behind the likes of John Gormley and Joan Bruton.

Murray Consultants published its research results, along with advice for politicians using or considering using Twitter as a means of communicating with the public.

It says politicians should write their own tweets rather than have a member of staff do it for them; be simultaneously informal but careful about what they write; be positive in tone; make time to use the medium properly; and use it to set agendas for debate rather than just respond to others.

The research also looked at Facebook usage where party differences are also apparent. 

Each of the Green Party TDs has a Facebook account while just 40pc of Fianna Fáil deputies have one.