Retweet Report: Happy Birthday to Zayn

WHICH 50 : Retweet Report: Happy Birthday to Zayn

The retweets were all running in One Direction this week as Australia’s Twitter crowd went Boy Band crazy at the start of the year. Blame it on the tepid news cycle if you like but One Direction pretty much dominated the Twittersphere down under thanks largely to one of the members of the band celebrating his 22nd birthday.

We weren’t even sure who’s birthday it was initially, they all just kind of blend into one gigantic MetaBoy after a while, but our best guess is that it was Zayn Malik @zaynmalik.

Our resident popular culture expert, Toronto based correspondent Buffy Montauben assures us we are on the right track, and as she is the only member of the team under 25 who are we to doubt her word – and this documentary evidence.

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Each Monday, KINSHIP digital and Which-50 take the pulse of the Australian Twittersphere to discover the most-retweeted links in the country over the last seven days. There were 2.8 million retweets this week — a typical week. While the fanbots* usually have a pretty high representation amongst the retweets, this was an unusual week in that they owned the space.

Malik’s tweet wishing himself a happy birthday “This is amazing ! 22 now let’s hope it’s a good un” had collected 271000 retweets and over 327,000 favorites.

In fact Malik took four of the top ten spots, English DJ @NaughtyBoyMusic took two – they were basically birthday wishes for Malik, and One Direction took one – ironically without a birthday cake in sight.

Only three none-1D retweets made the grade.

Youtube celebrity Nash Grier tweeted a link to his web site which seems largely designed to flog merchandise to his four million followers.

Author JK Rowling tweeted “I was born Christian. If that makes Rupert Murdoch my responsibility, I’ll auto-excommunicate. http://t.co/Atw1wNk8UX in response to some of the lapsed Australian media mogul’s more inflammatory tweets in recent times.

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Murdoch attracted the ire of many on the Twittersphere for his comments. And that criticism quickly migrated to other channels with this post by @TerryLaidler on Facebook capturing much of the sentiment.

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In the UK, meanwhile tweeter Mark England pointed to the obvious hypocrisy of some of the world leaders who marched in Paris last week in defense of free speech following the terrorist attacks in that city. A picture, as they say, is worth a thousand tweets.

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England’s post about an important social imperative attracted 875 retweets, only 270,889 less than Zayn Malik’s self congratulatory effort.

Free speech indeed.

About the authors

Mike Green is the CEO of KINSHIP digital. Andrew Birmingham is the editor and publisher of Which-50.

The Chatter Report is an initiative of the Which-50 Digital Intelligence Unit

*Fanbots in this instance are real people, as opposed to actual bots.

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