UK Election 2015

We have been collecting Twitter, Wikipedia, YouTube, and Facebook data on major parties, general hashtags (e.g., #ge2015), all MP candidates whose social media ids are known, and voter advice applications.

The data we produced during our election night data-hack produced a mixed picture. We were able to show that the Liberal Democrats were much weaker than the Tories and Labour on Twitter, whilst the SNP were much stronger; we also showed more Wikipedia interest for the Tories than Labour, both things which chime with the overall results. But a simple summing of mention counts per constituency produces a highly inaccurate picture: generally understating large parties and overstating small ones. And it’s certainly striking that the greater levels of effort Labour were putting into Twitter didn’t translate into electoral success: a warning for campaigns focusing solely on the “online” element.