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And the winner is…

Julia Gillard may have won the caucus ballot, but in the social media and online content world, Kevin Rudd came out on top

These are absolutely the last words we’re going to write about the ALP leadership contest (well, until the next one, anyway…). According to most pundits, Julia Gillard’s 71-31 victory over Kevin Rudd was a trouncing, leaving the Ruddster to slink off to the backbenches, his dreams of regaining the prime ministership in tatters.

But, if Mr R is looking for a silver lining, he may find it in the social media and online world, where he has far outscored the PM in terms of presence and user-generated content. At time of writing, Rudd had 1,076,4708 Twitter followers and 66,622 Facebook fans. By contrast, Julia Gillard had 190,628 Twitter followers and 119,277 Facebook fans. All of which rather supports Rudd’s assertion that in the eyes of the general public, he is by far the preferred choice for PM.

However, given how many people use social media and prefer to receive their news and other content through such forums, neither politician’s figures are particularly impressive. Indeed, it is fair to say that Australia’s pollies still lag behind their UK and, particularly, US counterparts when it comes to social media usage.

Another thought also occurs. The leadership battle wasn’t the only vote-fest in the headlines yesterday. The Oscars were also keeping the social networks abuzz. And since The Artist swept the board, perhaps there is a message that silence is golden…

 

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