Olympics 2010 – Day 15

In yesterday’s post I demonstrated how hockey was driving some of the Twitter activity around the Olympics particularly during Week #2. Today I’m going to dig a little deeper into what Squawq might tell us about the sport and audience participation on Twitter.

The US and Canadian women’s teams had their championship match on Thursday. Needless to say, that was for the gold. The US men played their semifinal against Finland on Friday. No medal immediately at stake. Sadly, the Twitterati appeared to have come out in droves for the latter game. Not the former.

Tweets: Thursday (36%) vs. Friday (64%)

When I slimmed down the search query to be even more specific to the two games I was interested in–women’s and men’s hockey–by pulling in search terms directly relevant to US Team Hockey, the skewed results were even more striking.

Tweets: Thursday (13%) vs. Friday (87%)

A caveat to the above numbers is that any online search–on Google, Yahoo!, Squawq, Techrigy, etc.–is only as good as the search terms provided for the algorithms to do their thing. Recognizing that, I did a quick check against the generic Olympics query I’ve been running in Squawq since the Opening Ceremonies.

Tweets: Thursday (47%) vs. Friday (53%)

A bit more even. Although there were other sports showing up fairly often as keywords and hashtags (e.g., speedskating and curling), “women hockey,” “gold,” and “#teamcanada” were by far in the majority.

So how can we know for sure if more people watched the men’s game than the women’s? We need to see audience data from Nielsen. But even then, it still seems like the men’s game garnered more activity online. That is, unless some of Friday’s tweets happened to be about the post-game party thrown by the Canadian women’s team.

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