Friday, February 10, 2012

Social Media and Local Politicians

During the elections in the fall I took a couple of looks at which candidates were using Twitter and how much.  In general usage was very low by the various candidates.  Now it is couple of months after the election I am curious to see which councilors are making use of Twitter.   Here is my ranking of the sitting councilors based on the number to tweets since November 7th, which is when I last tracked them.


  1. Shari Lukens - Colwood - 151 followers - 867 tweets mainly retweets
  2. Lisa Helps - Victoria - 693 followers - 648 tweets
  3. Frank Leonard - Saanich - 1,100 followers - 608 tweets
  4. Dave Hodgins - Esquimalt - 133 followers - 517 tweets
  5. Carl Jensen - Central Saanich - 611 followers - 415 tweets
  6. Catherine Alpha - SD#61 - 202 followers - 354 tweets
  7. Steve Price - Sidney - 84 followers -  342 tweets
  8. Shellie Gudgeon - Victoria - 322 followers - 235 tweets
  9. Diane McNally - SD#61 - 76 followers - 222 tweets
  10. Michelle Kirby - Oak Bay - 78 followers - 102 tweets
  11. Dean Murdock - Saanich - 380 followers - 95 tweets
  12. Vicki Sanders - Saanich - 109 followers - 57 tweets
  13. Dean Fortin - Victoria - 1,818 followers - 50 tweets 
  14. Ben Isitt - Victoria - 338 followers - 48 tweets
  15. Terry Siklenka - Central Saanich - 335 followers  - 38 tweets
  16. Kevin Murdoch - Oak Bay - 43 followers - 29 tweets
  17. Tim Morrison - Esquimalt - 241 followers - 26 tweets
  18. Deborah Nohr - SD#61 - 31 followers - 25 tweets
  19. Adam Olsen - Central Saanich - 121 followers - 12 tweets
  20. Rob Martin - Colwood - 27 followers - 6 tweets
  21. Larry Cross - Sidney - 78 followers - 5 tweets
  22. Charlayne Thornton-Joe - Victoria - 58 followers - 4 tweets
  23. Tara Ney - Oak Bay - 60 followers - 3 tweets 
  24. Michael McEvoy - SD #61 - 37 followers - 2 tweets, 0 after the election
  25. Marianne Alto - Victoria  - 454 followers - 0 tweets
  26. Lillian Szpak - Langford - 460 followers - 0 tweets since May 1 2011
  27. Zeb King - Central Saanich  - 27 followers - 0 tweets
  28. Teresa Harvey - Colwood - 8 followers - 0 tweets

The people on the top of the list surprised me, I expected to see Lisa Helps, Shellie Gudgeon and Frank Leonard in the top ten, but the rest were not who I expected.

For a couple of people I did not record their number of tweets as of November 7th so I can not track their activity since then unless I want to individually count them, though both of them are active and I expect would be in the top ten

Barb Desjardins - Esquimalt - 351 followers - 424 tweets - since she was acclaimed I did not track her in the election
Judith Cullington - Colwood - 106 followers - 304 tweets - somehow I missed during the election

It has been 95 days since I last checked on how they all did and only 11 have averaged more than a tweet a day.  Seven have averaged more than three a day, which I sort of consider the bottom of active twitter use.   That is seven out of 119 locally elected people in this region.   Only 23 have sent out any tweets since the election, that is 19.3%.

The majority of councilors and mayors in this region do not use any social media at all.

This all begs the question, is social media at all useful for local governance?

If you want to follow the local politicians on twitter, here is the link for Dan Pollocks twitter #yyj politicians list


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