Senate Scandal: National outrage, or Parliament Hill echo chamber?

The Senate expense scandal has gone from low rumble to full roar in the past week. Every media outlet in the country has been covering the House of Commons and Senate around the clock, and it seems as though the entire country is paying attention.

Being Ottawans, though, we sometime have a hard time telling if anyone outside the Capital Region actually cares about what’s happening on the Hill.

To get a better idea, we figured we’d see what social media had to say. We’ve tracked the hashtag #SenCa since last Tuesday. We then analyzed the tweets for location and broke that data down by province.

We recorded tweets from all ten provinces and all three territories. However, Ottawa still accounted for over one third of all #SenCa tweets.

As you can see in the chart below, more tweets came from Ottawa than any other region, including the rest of Ontario (excluding Ottawa).


Adjusting for population only made Ottawa more dominant. Per capita, Ottawa actually accounted for a 42 per cent share of voice, almost three times the amount of the next province.

For the most part, the tweets were proportional with population. Interestingly, Quebec and Alberta were the two provinces with the fewest tweets per capita.

As you can see in the chart below, which is adjusted for population, PEI, Nunavut, Yukon and British Columbia had the most tweets per capita.


If we look at the volume of tweets over time, the “Rest of Canada” has followed tweets from Ottawa pretty closely, except for a major spike on Oct. 25. Ottawa tweets actually outpaced tweets from the rest of the country on Oct. 23.