Alberta heads to the polls on April 16, 2019 for its 30th general election. During the campaign, Twitter will be home to the public conversation about the key issues, influencers, and candidates who will be making headlines in the coming weeks.
To add some colour to this conversation, Twitter is launching a custom emoji for this election. This will be the first time an emoji has been created for a provincial election in Alberta. The emoji will be unlocked every time one of four key hashtags (#ableg, #abpoli, #abvote, #ChooseYourAlberta) are used on Twitter.
Key Hashtags in Alberta
Historically, the most used political hashtag by Albertans is #ableg. This hashtag is unique to Alberta politics and is a shortened version of “Alberta Legislature”. March 26, 2015 was the date with the single highest volume of #ableg Tweets in history. This date corresponded with the last budget delivered by an Alberta government led by the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta.
The second most popular hashtag is #abpoli. The #abpoli hashtag is also popular with people Tweeting outside of Alberta, who want to join the conversation. May 5, 2015 was the date with the single highest volume of #apoli Tweets in history. This was the date of the last provincial election when Rachel Notley (@RachelNotley) was elected Alberta’s 17th premier.
Two other hashtags being used during this election are #abvote (note: that’s #abvote singular, not #abvotes plural) and #ChooseYourAlberta, the latter of which is being promoted by @ElectionsAlberta. Between now and election day, all four of these hashtags will unlock the custom emoji.
Rachel Notley and Jason Kenney
We anticipate the largest segment of the Twitter conversation during this election will centre on two of the most followed and most discussed politicians in Canada.
Alberta premier @RachelNotley is Twitter’s second most-followed sitting premier in Canada, after Ontario Premier Doug Ford (@fordnation). In 2018, she had more Twitter mentions than any sitting premier aside from @fordnation.
Challenger Jason Kenney (@jkenney) also has a massive Twitter audience that has driven a large volume of conversation in recent years. He was one of the Top 5 most-mentioned Canadian politicians on Twitter in 2016, 2017 and 2018.
So far in 2019, @jkenney has more than twice as many account mentions as @RachelNotley and he’s also one of Canada’s Top 10 most discussed politicians for the year.
The opposite is true of their party accounts on Twitter. Notley’s New Democratic Party (@AlbertaNDP) consistently has more mentions and followers than Kenney’s United Conservative Party (@Alberta_UCP). Both accounts have been Tweeting about issues and receiving thousands of mentions, Retweets and Likes in recent weeks.
There are a number of other candidates running for premier who are also using Twitter to share their news and views as election day nears:
In addition to following key hashtags and candidates, Twitter Canada Moments (@CanadaMoments) will be another way to stay abreast of the latest Alberta happenings during the campaign. Our Moments team will have regular updates on key election topics, curating the most important conversations and showcasing key Tweets and content.