Facebook tracks chatter on Obama, Tea Party at State of the Union

What were Facebook users talking about during speech?

Facebook chatter about a tea party lawmaker surpassed that of President Barack Obama in the hours before Obama’s State of the Union speech Jan. 25, according to statistics released by the social media network today.

Facebook reported that and other data points on its U.S. Politics on Facebook page today. The data was culled from several polls of Facebook users as well as internal data on usage before, during and after the speech.


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In one chart, Facebook said there was more chatter among Facebook users about Tea Party Caucus leader Rep. Michele Bachman (R-Minn.) in the hours leading up to the speech than there was about Obama or Republican Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, who delivered the Republican response.

Facebook discussion during the speech focused primarily on spending, with jobs coming in a distant second, Facebook said.

Other findings published by Facebook include:

  • At least four members of Congress were updating their Facebook pages from the House floor moments before Obama walked in and immediately after he concluded his remarks. Facebook published remarks from Reps. Ed Perlmutter (D-Colo.), Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and George Miller (D-Calif.) as well as Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla).
  • Reps. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), Tammy Baldwin (D-WIs.) and John Shimkus (R-Ill.) posted video responses to the State of the Union on their Facebook pages.
  • Obama received more than 28,000 Facebook responses to his State of the Union address while Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) received more than 3,500 responses and Bachmann received more than 6,000 responses.



 

About the Author

Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.

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