16 November 2015

Araby Calling

Ian Bremmer, a professor at New York University, posted a link to a graphic using Brookings Institution data, and graphically credited to The Independent (a British newspaper) and Statista, showing the top locations claimed byTwitter users supporting ISIL.

I thought it was interesting that the two leading Anglosphere countries stand out on a list of Near Eastern ones. I haven't done the exact maths, but as a proportion of population the United Kingdom Tweeters are about twice as many as a proportion of the population as the US ones. You can find the full report here. I'd hoped to find more data for other Anglosphere countries, but there was no table beyond the countries in the graphic. I do wonder how Canada, Australia and New Zealand fared in this ranking. Of course, this is self-reported data, so there are questions about how trustworthy it is.

Is this another small example of how Britain has more in common with its settler colonies than with its European neighbours? Six per cent of the Tweets were in French, the third-highest ranked language behind Arabic and English. So why doesn't France appear somewhere? Or maybe the rankings mean nothing at all. Just something to think about.

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