Today (Friday 20th September) is Global Climate day and is set to be the biggest day of climate action in world history. As a company, Media Measurement (MM) are supporting the movement by asking the team to work from home so that we can shut the office for the day to allow staff to participate. At MM, it is not #notbusinessasusual today as each member of the team is dedicating the day to complete pro-bono work on initiatives that support awareness and action on climate change with the option of working flexible hours to join local initiatives.
At MM we work with organisations who have a positive mission. Who dare to challenge the status quo. Who recognise the opportunities hidden in digital data so they can act – when and where it matters. Today’s global digital village holds billions of conversations connecting people, ideas and opinions – this revolution is a force for good.
In this blog, analysts look at the worldwide social media conversation in relation to advocates of the Global Climate Strike. For this limited research the team focussed on Twitter advocates: individuals using the official hashtags and calling for people to join. We decided to focus on proactive followersrather than passive supportersand therefore we removed retweets from the coverage. We felt this gave a greater view of those who are truly engaged.
Three distinct peaks were driven by the three phases of student driven strike action on the 15thof March inspired by Greta Thunberg’s protest in August 2018 in which she missed every Friday of school to sit outside Swedish parliament in protest at inaction on climate change. On March 15th(first peak) an estimated 1.4 million young people in 123 countries missed school on Friday 15thMarch to join the protests.
A second peak in advocacy was driven by more strikes which brought together more than 1.5 million young people in 2069 cities in 125 countries.Despite the higher number of people striking, there was less Twitter advocates compared with the 15thMarch protest.
Unlike the previous two strikes, the third Global Climate Strike on 20thSeptember generated a sharp increase in Twitter conversationin the lead up to the event. Interestingly, the build-up has been significantly prolonged for the Global Climate Strike day, with heightened numbers of advocates for the previous 6 weeks. This outlines the successful outreach strategies of the campaign and that the movement is gaining more traction. This has been driven by heightened adult engagement. Adults have been increasingly engaged by campaigns such as #notbusinessasusual which has been running alongside the Global Climate Strike campaign and has seen on LinkedIn over the last three weeks.
The hashtag #ClimateStrike was the most successful campaign in the top five countries engaged in the Global Climate Strike. The USA accounted for the highest volume of tweets containing the hashtag. However, when adjusted for population, the most engaged country was Ireland.
Who is Engaged?
A global sample of 3,061 Twitter users who had posted about joining the #GlobalClimateStrike was analysed by our team and revealed that:
- The Global Climate Strike Twitter audience is dominated by users from the English-speaking world.
- Twitter users in the UK and USA each accounted for 24% of the audience. Meanwhile, 8% of the audience was based in Canada.
- The audience typically lives in large cosmopolitan cities. The largest share of people currently who have posted about joining the Global Climate Strike are located in London.
- Greta Thunberg, Barack Obama and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are the top three most followed influencers by the sampled Twitter audience indicating that Twitter users participating in the Global Climate Change conversation have liberal and left-wing political leanings
- People who read leading liberal-leaning news media such as The Guardian and The New York Times are strongly represented within the Global Climate Strike participant sample.
Join us next week when we’ll be looking at the data to see just how effective the campaign today has been and what we can learn about the future of the climate change debate and the audiences engaging with it.
MM. INSPIRING DIGITAL INTELLIGENCE.