We chose the hashtag “#Rio2016” because as a worldwide event we assumed it would provide us with endless data. Analyzing the Sysomos Map for the Rio Olympics’ marketable hashtag “#Rio2016” proved to give our group a plethora of unexpected and intriguing information. The first thing that stuck out to our group was the geography map. With a worldwide event such as the Olympics, we expected a lot of worldwide use of the hashtag, however what we found was the United States came out on top, and Mexico even surpassed Brazil, the host country of the Olympics, which was surprising to us. The tweet activity included close to 30 million mentions, and peaked on August 5th, which we found was the day of the opening ceremony.
When it came to the buzzgraph, our group had originally expected to see a lot of names of athletes (i.e. Lochte and Phelps) that were competing or titles of events, however we found a lot of general words appeared such as “Olympics”, “team”, and “athletes.” Furthermore, as an experiment for ourselves, we switched the buzzgraph to the United States only, and noticed more of the kinds of words we expected appeared. We found the word cloud to be interesting because it did an excellent job of highlighting the diversity and whole-world aspect of the Olympics, encompassing several words in different languages. The most retweeted tweet was that of Jamaican sprinter and world record holder Usain Bolt, whose tweet exhibited his pride for himself and his country’s fellow sprinters.
— Usain St. Leo Bolt (@usainbolt) August 20, 2016
In conclusion, this activity enlightened us that a good amount of engagement is stemmed from places that weren’t expected, particularly about things that weren’t expected. Hence, you can’t assume what will and what won’t draw the majority of attention on Twitter.
Paul Dwyer, Michael Lehr, Sean Robson, Cole Zimmerman