Articles

Everything I Learned About the Royal Wedding I Learned From Twitter

In USA on June 11, 2011 by Katherine Hutton Tagged: ,

On April 29, all my little girl fantasies came true. Prince William married Kate Middleton in true royal wedding fashion, and I got to share in every moment of it.

But that’s not even when it all started.

While performing my daily morning routine on Nov. 16, I cavalierly scrolled through my Twitter for iPhone app, to see what I had missed while I was sleeping. After the usual quotidian tweets from people I know, my Twitter feed suddenly blew up with news of the royal engagement. Royal expert and ex-pat Jerramy Fine did all the work for me, tweeting and retweeting everything I needed to know.

From that moment, Twitter has lived and breathed the Royal Wedding. I certainly wasn’t the only person interested.

In the weeks leading up to the wedding, Middleton’s internet and social media citations surpassed those of all other members of the Royal Family, including the deceased Princess Diana. Mashable has a fantastic infographic demonstrating all of the social media buzz. By the time the ceremony began at 6 a.m. EDT, all ten worldwide trending topics on Twitter were related to the Royal Wedding.

Twitter trending topics from the day before the Royal Wedding.

In a clever and timely move, Clarence House, the residence and office of The Prince of Wales, created its official Twitter account at around the same time as William and Kate’s actual engagement. With the couple’s engagement announcement to be made a few weeks later, Clarence House was well-aware of the exponentially increased amount of publicity that would be coming its way and prepared itself ahead of time by joining the world of social media.

The Royal Wedding is obviously just one example of how Twitter has become the place for everyone to broadcast his or her opinions in 140 characters or less. I was thrilled to share my viewpoint on wedding dress speculation and my shared alma mater of the University of St Andrews. My roommate, on the other hand, tweeted on Nov. 16: “It’s not even 10 a.m. on day 1 and I’m already sick of hearing about the royal engagement.” However, positive tweets related to the topic were at 58 percent with only 18 percent of tweets registering as negative.

Twitter is fast becoming a resource of news, opinions, and everything in between. Sure, sometimes a user has to weed through the mundane “omg I can’t fall asleep” tweets, but there is certainly a plethora of useful information out there. It’s a great tool to use to join a community of people outside of one’s daily life who share similar interests. I obviously couldn’t revel in my Royal Wedding enthusiasm with my roommate, so it was easy to countdown the days with Twitter instead.

Tweets with the “Royal Wedding” hashtag are still being posted, right up to this very minute. Thanks to Twitter, I can easily continue my royal obsession.

Now, if only it could help me to marry my own prince…

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2 Responses to “Everything I Learned About the Royal Wedding I Learned From Twitter”

  1. I have to admit, I was one of those following the Royal Wedding on Twitter and enjoying the commentary from my network … even if much of it was insignificant. Your opening and relating it to your personal experience was a nice way to start as well.

    It seemed like the trend you were talking about was how Twitter has transformed our experience of a global event such as the Royal Wedding. To really make this a trend, though, you had to dig deeper outside of just the Royal Wedding to find another example or two of where this was happening. What about a global sporting event like the Super Bowl? Or live tweeting during a big TV program to connect with other viewers?

    There was also a bit of a mismatch between your opening line of all your fantasies coming true, and your last about still looking for your own prince. The royal obsession is certainly a symbol of something in our own psyche and how we experience an event like that. The trending chart that you shared was a good example of the dominance of that conversation.

    The chart did raise a few unanswered questions – such as what that reference to “strawberry cheetos” meant? The trend chart infographic from Mashable that you mentioned might have been a good visual to include as well. As it stood, it wasn’t clear where you were getting some of your stats such as the point about 58% of tweets being positive. Going a bit further to really relate this to a trend instead of just a single very interesting phenomenon is what would have brought this closer to answering the question posed in the blog assignment for the week. (3)

  2. Another interesting aspect of Twitter being one of our main resources for news is that we get multiple uniquely personal and specialized views on the same news. I was able to get the fashion divas’ take on Kate’s dress, the news organizations’ delivery of the wedding events and multiple links to commentary, video and photographs — all from real people in real time. This made it all the more personal and engaging to me.

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