Leaders say, citizens decide. Social impact of COVID-19 pandemic on Twitter

Sebastián Sánchez Castillo, Nadia Alonso López

Abstract


This research provides an analysis on the communication by leaders of Europe’s most affected countries by COVID-19, United Kingdom, France, Italy and Spain established via Twitter on the health organization recommended three urgent lines of action to state-nations; 1. Prevention and control of the infection, 2. Diagnosis and treatment, 3. Social and economic consequences. Through the Communicative Efficiency Index we have tested the leaders’ capacity to communicate importants decisions and health measures with the purpose of slowing down the virus expansion and saving lives. After analysis of 550 tweets, the results show a different intervention on crisis communication by some of the political agents analyzed and the evidence of a non-coordinated answer to the pandemic by the countries affected. Indications made by leaders through social networks have not always had the approval of the million people audience that has received them.

Keywords


political communication; crisis communication; COVID-19; pandemic; Twitter.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.15847/obsOBS16120221832

License URL: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/