March 9th 2011. Cairo, Egypt. Media Republic, the mass media and marketing specialists, today announced the results of an online survey conducted on www.Cairo360.com, their multi-award-winning website, which showed that 66% of Egyptian social media users living in Cairo prefer to use Twitter for updates on the latest news on Egypt after January 25th rather than official news websites. The survey also shows that 25% of Twitter users only signed up for the micro-blogging service after the revolution had started to stay up-to-date with the events.
The survey shows that 89% of respondents now have a Twitter account, against a near perfect 99% who have a Facebook account. Despite Twitter lagging behind in terms of online penetration, 64% of respondents thought Twitter was a much better source for information than Facebook. And while television broadcasts were the primary source for up-to-date information specifically pertaining to news-based material, Twitter was the second most important source, according to respondents.
Factual and concise, the survey compiled responses from 300 users of Cairo360.com, and found that 80% of respondents’ social media browsing habits shifted after January 25th. Out of those, 66% began focusing more on Twitter for tweets from news websites rather than checking the actual websites themselves. Although Facebook was considered the most popular social media before the revolution, the survey results show that 53% of respondents began checking Twitter first before Facebook.
“The general consensus on social media in Egypt prior to the events on January 25th was that Facebook was far more popular than Twitter,” said Waseem El Tanahi, Managing Director of Media Republic. “With Twitter having received so much exposure in mainstream media during the revolution as a social platform for up-to-date news, it’s understandable that there has since been a surge in Twitter users in Egypt.”
“It’s no surprise that the micro-blogging formula worked so well as a communications platform for sending and receiving messages from revolution hotspots,” he added, “Particularly considering that during the four-day internet and telephone blackout it seemed to be the only method of getting on-the-ground accounts from the more determined and tech-savvy protesters.”
The section of the survey pertaining to the language through which information is shared showed that 99% of respondents used a single language for the majority of time spent on the web. At the same time, 85% browsed and searched their chosen social media platforms in both Arabic and English, to be as well informed as possible.