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The Tale of Washington D.C. During #Inauguration Weekend

On Friday, January 20, Donald Trump became the 45th president of the United States.

It’s the climax of an American tale that has kept people guessing from the beginning. But while elections coverage catalyzed a flurry of mixed emotions worldwide, social media analytics have steadily predicted a Trump presidency even before the votes were tallied.

We hunkered down around our platform once again to view the weekend’s events from a data lens, casting our personal feelings aside, and letting the numbers (and charts) do the talking.
 

Friday, January 20, 2017

 


 

By creating a virtual fence around The National Mall, we collected social media posts that narrated the course of events in real time. On Inauguration Day, activity across Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook began to peak around noon, with a leaning towards positive sentiment.

 


 

The top-influential posts of the afternoon suggested that the positive sentiment we observed was largely fueled by Facebook, where many veterans and Trump supporters in DC expressed their gratitude to the new president on the @DonaldTrump fan page.

 


 

Online sentiment contrasted the sentiment “on foot” as suggested by DC civil unrest coverage, and one notable social post (shown below).

The picture posited the crowds attending President Trump’s swear-in (L) next to the crowd at President Barack Obama’s swear-in on January 20, 2009. The photo has since sparked outrage from the Trump staff and commentators who retorted, “This was the largest audience ever to witness an inauguration, period, both in person and around the globe.”

In his interview with Reuters, White House spokesman Sean Spicer said that he stood by his above remark “given the ‘tens of millions of people that watched it online’ with devices that were unavailable in the past.”

 

A combination of photos taken at the National Mall shows the crowds attending the inauguration ceremonies to swear in U.S. President Donald Trump at 12:01pm (L) on January 20, 2017 and President Barack Obama on January 20, 2009, in Washington, DC, U.S.    REUTERS/Lucas Jackson (L), Stelios Varias Source: REUTERS/Lucas Jackson (L), Stelios Varias

 

The turnout online was, indeed, high–attracting 358.8K social posts around #Inauguration worldwide, and 263.2K unique authors between 12 a.m. EST and 11:59 p.m. EST on Friday.

In DC alone, 2.2K unique authors published 5.1K posts around #Inauguration on Friday.

 

Gender & Generational Breakdown

At midday, our DC geo-fenced feed showed that several generations (Millennial, Gen X, and Baby Boomer) were vocal online, but grew less active as the day wore on.

 

#Inauguration Geo-Fence + Demographics Zoomph

 

Men drove a majority of the conversation, even when looking at the male-female split among every generation.

 



 

In our feed tracking #inauguration worldwide, social media activity dipped in the early evening but elevated again after 8 p.m. EST. Interestingly, women were more vocal than men on a global scale.

 

#Inauguration worldwide + Demographics Zoomph

 

Personal feelings aside, it was nice to see glimmers of peace and unity even at a time marred by controversy and disbelief.

 


 

“It’s a unique American celebration, and this is no different,” said photographer David Hume Kennerly of CNN. “I love watching democracy at work — whether you like who got elected or not. That’s how we do it. It’s done not through the barrel of a gun, but through peaceful measures. And that’s one of the great things about our country.”

 

Saturday, January 21, 2017

The following day gave rise to a story all its own–a story that gathered a millions of Americans just in DC (a reported 5 million people across the globe) for a historic, peaceful protest honoring the champions of human rights.

The social media narrative of #WomensMarch was powerful, and proved to have a cross-generational and gender-bending impect. Our DC geo-fenced feed reflected the #WomensMarch blowout over #Inauguration.
 


 

Gender & Personality Breakdown

Within DC, #WomensMarch attracted more female participation than #Inauguration, though men joined the conversation at nearly 50% on a global scale.
 


 

An analysis of the top bio words of the social media authors posting on Inauguration Day from DC included news, life, alum, lover, and politics. Whereas, the top bio words of authors posting during the Women’s March included writer, lover, love, life, and director.

Farther down the list, the top bio words suggest that a majority of the online audience on Inauguration Day included students and journalists in D.C. Similarly, the Women’s March attracted student participation, as well as those who identified themselves as mom, feminist, photographer, or activist (words that did not overlap with the list of self-identifiers during the Inauguration).

 


 

By the end of the evening, it was apparent that Saturday’s protesters not only left an impression at the capital, but on social media with 2.2x more activity around #WomensMarch than #Inauguration in 24 hours.

 



 

See additional coverage of #WomensMarch, or track social media activity around other news that matters to you with a free trial of Zoomph!

 

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