What sort of person uses Twitter?by James Crabtree / November 18, 2009 / Leave a comment
Published in December 2009 issue of Prospect Magazine
Is Twitter just a tool for the chattering classes? It seems so. A new Prospect/YouGov poll reveals that the belief of Twitter users in civil liberties is the most important factor distinguishing them from the general public. British users showed liberal inclinations in October, by breaking a court injunction banning the Guardian from naming mining company Trafigura. They then turned on Daily Mail writer Jan Moir for ill-judged remarks on the death of gay pop star Stephen Gately, and Sunday Times critic AA Gill for shooting a baboon on safari.
Such actions are part of a broader trend. Our poll shows that while 57 per cent of Britons think greater police powers to tackle terrorism are more important than protecting civil liberties, less than half of Twitter users agree. Fifty-six per cent of the public agree that “the greatest victims of discrimination in Britain these days are often ordinary white men,” compared to only 45 per cent of Twitter users. And on a relative scale constructed from our poll data (see graphic above) Twitter users are among the most liberal groups in Britain.