Robert Heffernan wins Gold in Moscow – the reaction on Twitter

by Stephen O'Leary on 15/08/13

Yesterday morning, August 14th 2013, Robert Heffernan won the 50km Race Walk at the World Athletics Championships in Moscow.  As with any major international sporting success for an Irish athlete, the story spread across social media, as people went online to congratulate the Cork star.

Heffernan crossed the line in a time of three hours, 37 minutes and 56 seconds – only two seconds off his own Irish record – and in the hours that followed, his success was celebrated in over 11,000 tweets.

Minute by Minute

Olytico has analysed these tweets on a minute by minute basis, and identified the key peaks during the day (click on the icon on the top right of the chart to view in full-screen).

The moment Heffernan crossed the line – word began to spread across Twitter, with over 100 tweets per minute mentioning the Cork athlete published at the peak time just after 9am.

What we said:

When analysing the content of the 11,000 tweets, unsurprisingly ‘champion’ and ‘Ireland’ are two of the most frequently occurring words.

Word Cloud of the Top 50 words used in tweets about Robert Heffernan on the day he won his 50km Walk World Championship in Moscow
Word Cloud of the Top 50 words used in tweets about Robert Heffernan on the day he won his 50km Walk World Championship in Moscow

 

When we remove Rob’s name from the cloud, we get a better picture of the conversations – and the national pride starts to shine through with “Ireland”, “Irish”, “Irishman”, “Proud Irishman” and “IrishAthletics” all coming to the fore.

 

Word Cloud of the Top 50 words used in tweets about Robert Heffernan on the day he won his 50km Walk World Championship in Moscow (excluding some terms)
Word Cloud of the Top 50 words used in tweets about Robert Heffernan on the day he won his 50km Walk World Championship in Moscow (excluding some terms)

When “Ireland” and “Championships” are removed, other main topics of the tweets appear, inlcuding:

The comparison with Ireland’s previous Athletics World Champions Eamonn Coghlan and Sonia Agrith.

Other high profile Irish Twitter accounts who were re tweeted during the day including Dara O’Briain and Des Cahill.

Some of the most popular hashtags including inspirational and whataneffort.

Word Cloud of the Top 50 words used in tweets about Robert Heffernan on the day he won his 50km Walk World Championship in Moscow (excluding some terms)
Word Cloud of the Top 50 words used in tweets about Robert Heffernan on the day he won his 50km Walk World Championship in Moscow (excluding some terms)

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