India election results top trend on Twitter worldwide

May 16th, 2009 - 5:53 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, May 16 (IANS) The excitement of the Indian elections has transferred online to one of its most popular social messaging sites - Twitter - where it emerged as the top topic posted Saturday.
The Twitter tag “#indiavotes09″ was the number one topic on the trends list of Twitter search, demonstrating once again the strength of Indians using these new technology tools.

Congress winner from Thiruvananthapuram Shashi Tharoor was keeping track of the margin level of his victory through Twitter. “Looking good! My lead has crossed 30,000 with half the votes counted,” he tweeted from his Blackberry.

An hour later, he messaged: “A lead of over 59,000 now! It’s almost a done deal”.

Finally, the triumphal message: “I have won with a majority greater than any Congress candidate in Tvm in 30 years…Truly humbling. Now the real work begin”.

At 2.35 p.m., he again tweeted: “Still sinking in - a majority of over 100,000 votes!”

Twitter is a micro-messaging tool, which became a global phenomenon in 2008, growing by an estimated 900 percent last year.

The 26/11 Mumbai attacks had been the major turning point for Twitter in India, with Mumbai residents flashing the latest news from television or eyewitnesses on the social media channel.

India’s election result becoming the top trend did solicit puzzled reactions from other Twitter users around the globe, but most of them were positive. ‘Jill H’ from Indianapolis wrote: “i personally love seeing #indiavotes09 as the top trending topic as it shows how much we are a global community!!”

A few minutes later, an Indian, ‘abhijitkumar’ wrote: “It also shows how Indians are taking to social media seriously! First time an Indian topic is trending!”

Another user, ‘pranay01′ wrote: “#indiavotes09…the power of India…when india tweets it tops the charts …:)….”

Meanwhile, Twitter was not just used to broadcast news from television and other media sources, there was also instant analyses and opinion in 140 words.

“No surprise in loss of BJP. they had no leader, agenda, aim, nothing. they looked lost. BJP says they are shocked. im not,” said ‘amit3d’

According to ‘gauravkanoongo’: “BJP is not losing as much seats as Third front n others are losing, Congress’s gain is due to loss of others but not of BJP”.

Seeing the interest online, ‘indreshtwit’ wrote: “Just how many of you twitter birds voted anyway? Just curious”.

As per ViziSense, which analyses web visitor statistics, there are about 533,000 India-based users of Twitter. In fact, according to Alexa, India ranks third after United States and Germany in the number of twitterers.

Apart from Tharoor, independent candidate from Gandhinagar Mallika Sarabhai had used Twitter in her campaign.

On Google trends Saturday, “India elections results 2009″ was the top search term on Google India, which peaked at 10.20 a.m. Saturday. As per the statistics, 16 percent of the searches was done by net users from Chennai, followed by 10 percent each from Delhi and Mumbai.

In fact, Indian netizens seemed to be interested only in knowing about the results Saturday, with the top 20 search items in Google India all related to the elections, with media sites featuring prominently in them. This contrasts with Friday’s hot search, which was “maruti ritz”, with only one media site being in the top ten searched items.

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