news Tuesday, April 28, 2015 - 05:30

The Norwegian Prime Minister @Ema_Soldberg is the only woman among the world’s top twenty documented twitterati with a large following despite suffering from mild dyslexia which leads to occasional spelling mistakes. We wish her more success and many more tweets.

Turkish President @RT_Erdogan also makes it to the top (among the five most followed) despite ensuring that the service has been shut down in his own country. The Prime Minister of Malaysia @Najib Razak is reportedly a selfie specialist and misses no opportunity to pose and smile. India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi made history when he posted a selfie in the election booth on 30 April 2014. 

And unbelievable as it may sound, it took the United States’ Secretary of State John Kerry a full year before he was officially allowed to get on twitter.

These and more details are contained in a report released today on how international leaders have taken to the micro-blogging site to stay in touch, make a statement, tell a story or simply wish their followers a good day. Read full report here. 

According to available data, US president Barack Obama is most followed (58.5 million). Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi comes next (11.9 million) and the Pontifex has 5.97 million followers.

The report adds that size does matter, "The meteoric rise of the Indian Prime Minister and the large following of the Turkish President and the King of Saudi Arabia shows that leaders of the most populous countries and countries where Twitter penetration is high have a clear advantage in garnering a large army of dedicated followers." 

Going by retweets, Pope Francis @Pontifex is by far the most influential tweep 'with 9,929 retweets for every tweet he sends on his Spanish account and 7,527 retweets on average on his English account' says the report. It adds that Saudi Arabia’s @KingSalman is in second position, averaging 4,419 retweets per tweet.

So do these leaders tweet themselves? Apparently, not. 'Notable exceptions include Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves (@IlvesToomas), European Council President @DonaldTusk, Latvian Foreign Minister @EdgarsRinkevicsand Norway’s Prime Minister @Erna_Solberg,' says the report. 

The report says the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has made best use of the tool while others organisations including foreign offices have used twitter as a means of speaking to each other publicly when private talks have hit a road block.




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