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MEPs on Twitter

map-meps-on-twitterIt was the kick-off of the new parliamentary term in Strasbourg last week, and there was a lot of media interest about who those MEPs are. You can find a plenty of interesting facts about them here (check out the tabs at the bottom of the page). I found it curious that about half of the MEPs are newly elected, almost exactly the same proportion as at the previous elections in 2009.

But one thing has certainly changed – the elected representatives of EU citizens are more and more taking to the social media.  We updated our Twitter lists for the start of the new term and found out that whereas before the May elections we had just less than 400 MEPs on Twitter, now the number has risen to well over 500 (see below). The elections themselves could well be a factor in this, with politicians finding it increasingly important to connect to the public through various channels.

I asked myself if the use of Twitter by MEPs from different countries varies, so I quickly went through our Twitter lists to devise the table below. It shows how many MEPs from each country have Twitter accounts, and what is their share out of all MEPs from that country.

Please note these are not official figures. Things change pretty fast online, maybe some of the new MEPs have already opened Twitter accounts after the collection of data (which took place at the end of June, i.e. just before the first plenary). Also, in some cases there may be some doubt whether a certain account is official; then we would probably not include it in our lists; so our count may err on the side of safety.

With those disclaimers in mind, here is the table:

 

 

MEPs Total

MEPs on Twitter

%

Austria

18

14

77,8

Belgium

21

16

76,2

Bulgaria

17

7

41,2

Czech Republic

21

12

57,1

Denmark

13

11

84,6

Germany

96

61

63,5

Greece

21

11

52,4

Spain

54

39

72,2

Estonia

6

2

33,3

Finland

13

12

92,3

France

74

61

82,4

Ireland

11

10

90,9

Croatia

11

8

72,7

Hungary

21

5

23,8

Italy

73

65

89,0

Lithuania

11

6

54,5

Luxembourg

6

3

50,0

Latvia

8

7

87,5

Malta

6

6

100,0

Netherlands

26

22

84,6

Poland

51

36

70,6

Portugal

21

5

23,8

Romania

32

16

50,0

Slovakia

13

11

84,6

Slovenia

8

6

75,0

Sweden

20

17

85,0

United Kingdom

73

53

72,6

Cyprus

6

4

66,7

Total

751

526

70,0

I must say I am impressed with the proportion of MEPs on Twitter from larger countries like Italy and France. Smaller countries like Finland, Ireland, Latvia and Malta (6 out of 6!) are also scoring well, though, of course, the sample there is smaller. On the other hand, my home country, Bulgaria, and a few others (say, Hungary and Portugal) have relatively few MEPs on Twitter – so plenty of room for improvement in this respect!

If you want to know more about what all these MEPs are actually tweeting, you should really check our EP Newshub app – you can see what MEPs and EP services are sharing on Twitter and other social media plaforms in the last 5 days and you can sort results by country, by topic, by political group or by language.

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