The recent terrorists attacks in Paris pushed Twitter’s usual fare of fair haired boy bands onto the back burner in a week which saw a big spike in Australian retweets on the microblogging site.

There were over 5 million retweets this last week according to the KINSHIP digital / Which-50 Retweet report. That is a significant jump on the regular activity which usually sits around the 3 million mark. (It’s actually higher but we exclude a couple of terms so we don’t have to spend every week writing the same story about 5 Sounds of Summer.)

Three tweets in particular resonated with the Australian Twitterati.

In the first by Gus Bruno retweeted an exchange between US presidential candidate Donald Trump and the French Ambassador to the US Gerard Araud.

Trump plumbed his own remarkable depths this this observation. “Isn’t it interesting that the tragedy in Paris took place in one of the toughest gun control countries in the world.”

Araud retorted in relatively undiplomatic terms, “This message is repugnant in its lack of any human decency. Vulture.”

Just a moment

But here’s the thing. Trumps comment actually related to the Charlie Hebdo attacks on January. Yes, it was appalling then. And yes it is appalling now. But it is still the case that Araud was responding to a nine month old tweet.

It is a good example of the fragility of Twitter as a news source – both brilliant and flawed.

Two other Paris tweets also made their way to the top of the Retweet List.

The first was the The Projects’s tweet of Waleed Aly’s editorial immediately after the attacks which subsequently went viral on Youtube attracting over 16 million views and counting.

The second was a tweet by @talkingbaws which contained a video of football fans singing the French national anthem as they evacuated Stade de France

Finally, and a very long way away from the traumas of Paris, Mitchell Johnson’s retirement also crept onto the list, as did the obligatory boy band reference.


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