Twitter and Ukraine

Twitter and Ukraine

Before November 21, the Kyiv Post – the primary English language news outlet in Ukraine – had a small but inconsequential online presence. Its editors and reporters maintained similarly low profiles.

But as Ukraine devolved into chaos, the Kyiv Post and its editor, Christopher Miller, found themselves go-to sources for updates on the unfolding crisis. The Twitter handles for the Kyiv Post (@KyivPost) and Miller (@ChristopherJM) were mentioned a combined 110,285 times globally on Twitter between the eve of the protests and 3 March – 35,286 times alone during the main days of violence from 18-22 February.

Their accounts grew in profile proportionate to their newfound global visibility: The Kyiv Post’s account acquired 22,630 new followers between 20 November and 3 March. Miller’s Twitter profile, which had just 975 followers pre-protests, experienced even more explosive growth, gaining 19,396 new followers – an increase of almost 2000 percent.

This is yet another proof point that Twitter is becoming a primary means for communicating events in real-time and that the microblog is among the first place western audiences look for information on crises as they develop around the world.

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