Who’s winning the Chinese Internet? Kevin Rudd or Julia Gillard?

In our first blog post on Kevin Rudd’s trip to the World Economic Forum event in Tianjin, we noted that the former prime minister and  foreign minister had ‘290 thousand-plus weibo followers’. Well, in just under two months, ‘Lao Lu’ (老陆) – as he’s known on weibo – has gained another 50 thousand-odd fans.

Given his proficiency with the Chinese language, frequent trips to China and prolific weibo posts, one might assume that Mr Rudd would easily outmatch Prime Minister Gillard on the Chinese internet.

Not necessarily.

In the picture above, we can see Rudd and Gillard’s respective Baidu People In The News (百度新闻人物) scorecard. By this measure, they are neck-and-neck.

Here’s the breakdown:

Popularity Score (风云榜热度) : Gillard 156Rudd 120

Page Views (媒体收录量) : Gillard 78,785 / Rudd 76,605

Click Rate (访问量) : Gillard 2283 / Rudd 5055

Votes of Support (次支持) : Gillard 1031 / Rudd 1044

Another measure we can compare the two by is with Sina Weibo’s Weibo Trend Search (see below)

Here we can see that over the past three months, the term “Gillard” (吉拉德 ) – represented by the blue line – has consistently been mentioned on weibo many more times than Rudd (in green).

So what do you think these numbers tell us? Who is winning the Chinese Internet? Julia Gillard, or Kevin Rudd?

Author: Fergus Ryan


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