52% of Canadians are ‘Engaged’ with Public Policy, Social and Political Issues Online

There are thousands of conversations happening about issues and organizations each day. As more people go online everyday they are defining the issues we discuss and making their voices heard. The growing popularity of social media use around the world has compounded the number of these conversations and provided a platform for thoughts, opinions and influence to spread quickly – far and wide.

Using our 24-country monthly Global @dvisor survey, we have been tracking online behaviour and the use of social media as it relates to discussion about public policy, social and political issues. Our latest study reveals more than half (52%) of Canadians are using social media either ‘actively’ (29%) to make their voices heard or ‘passively’ (23%) to gain a greater understanding of the issues.

To put it in perspective, 52% is more than the typical voter turnout for most municipal elections, hovering around turnout for many provincial elections, and is drastically higher than the proportion of the vote that any federal political party receives. These 52% of Canadians transcend boundary, gender, generation or political affiliation – it is a critical mass of Canadians who are participating in the dialogue and the shaping of this country.

With so many Canadians engaged online, this places Canada 7th overall (in terms of overall population) out of 24 countries surveyed, ahead of countries like Great Britain (52%), the United States (47%), Germany (46%), and Japan (25%), but behind South Korea (65%), Australia (58%) and Sweden (57%).

The full results of this study were published in our latest whitepaper: A Special Report on the Use of Social Media for Public and Political Discourse