Leader Profiles

President Donald Trump

assumed office January 2017

Date JoinedMarch 2009
Tweets36,500
Twitter Followers44,000,000
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
(May 2016 figure)
67,540,000
Governed Population325,442,900
GDP/Capita$56,116
Freedom Score (out of 100)89
Average Number of Tweets Per Day11.64
Exclamation Marks Per Week43.82

Donald Trump’s name was synonymous with Twitter even before he ran for his very first political office, which happened to be President of the United States. Several databases could be filled with what has been written about his Twitter usage prior to taking office and during the fiery drudge march of the campaign. Even more has been written about his decision to keep his private twitter account (and prolifically use it) since he became the 45th President of the United States in January. In the context of this project, he is both an anomaly and the zenith of the group of leaders analyzed on this site, but not for the most obvious reasons.

President Trump is not the most prolific tweeter of those assembled. Both of his accounts combined boast only (if one can in good conscience use that word here) 38,283 tweets. President Maduro of Venezuela in comparison has over 89,000 tweets, and he joined the platform 4 years after President Trump did. However, the vast majority of these are retweets.

President Trump is also not the only one with a passionate devotion to the exclamation point. On each of the leader profiles pages you will find a calculation of the average number of exclamation points used in an average week on Twitter.

What makes him unique is how famous he is for specifically for Twitter, and the level of emotion (good or bad) he inspires in readers and followers to justify that infamy.

Word cloud based on last 2,839 tweets from President Trump’s personal Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

For more resources about Donald Trump’s Twitter, please see ‘Trump on Twitter Resources’ in main menu.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi

assumed office May 2014

Date JoinedJanuary 2009
Tweets17,400
Twitter Followers37,500,000
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
(May 2016 figure)
41,190,000
Governed Population1,345,509,300
GDP/Capita$1,598
Freedom Score (out of 100)77
Average Number of Tweets Per Day5.35
Exclamation Marks Per Week4.12

Prime Minister Modi maintains a robust Twitter presence which speaks to his attempt to engage his massive constituency, which is known for loving social media, especially Twitter. President Modi’s dignified yet opinionated content aligns well with his public persona.

Word cloud based on last 2,546 tweets from Prime Minister Modi’s Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

The graph above codes themes from Prime Minister Modi’s Twitter account over time.

Image via TheHindu.com; I do not claim ownership of this image.

Pope Francis

papacy began March 2013

Date JoinedFebruary 2012
Tweets1,385
Twitter Followers15,400,000
Twitter Users in Governed CountryNo data, N/A
Governed PopulationVatican City: 796
Catholics Worldwide (2015 figure): 1,285,000
GDP/Capita$21,198
Freedom ScoreNo data
Average Number of Tweets Per Day0.65
Exclamation Marks Per Week0.78

Pope Francis has been notably engaged on Twitter, inspiring millions daily with personal, heartfelt content that befits his famous sincerity. He does not simply tweet religious reflections, but a large portion of his content deals with contentious issues that he is unafraid to acknowledge and try to help mediate with calls to aid and tolerance.

NOTES: GDP/Capita via Encyclopedia.com, world population of Catholics via Pontifical Yearbook 2017

Word cloud based on most frequent words on Pope Francis’ Twitter account.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

Word cloud based on Pope Francis' Original Tweets. Captured + analyzed via Nvivo

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan

assumed office August 2014   •   Served as Prime Minister March 2003 to August 2014

Date JoinedAugust 2009
Tweets4,851
Twitter Followers11,800,000
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
(2014 figure based on monthly usage)
6,500,000*
Governed Population81,243,498
GDP/Capita$9,126
Freedom Score (out of 100)38
Average Number of Tweets Per Day1.6
Exclamation Marks Per Week.96

Of the word frequency analyses ran on the leaders profiled on this site, Turkey’s was the only one to contain ‘terror’ in the top echelon. ‘Continuation’ was not unique, but it does help to refine the narrative that can be seen from this word frequency analysis. Use of the country name was uniformly (and unsurprisingly) one of the highest frequency words across all accounts, though Turkey is one of the highest scorers in this regard. Many of the other words align with other leaders’ content.

Together, these three words possibly point to the conservative nationalism portrayed as a recoil against terror threats and attacks on Turkey in recent (and not so recent) years. Recent tragedies include the Reina nightclub massacre in Istanbul in January 2017, the Ataturk Airport bomb and gun attack in June 2016, and the very public assassination of the Russian ambassador to Turkey in an art gallery in December 2016. The UK warns that “terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Turkey” on their Foreign Travel Advice page.

Partially as a response to these events- and the continued threat of many more by Kurdish separatist group TAK and Daesh (ISIL), among others, President Erdoğan has cracked down on freedoms (the country’s Freedom Score is 38/100), and leaned unambiguously into re-authoritarianism based on fierce nationalism… a potential continuation of Turkey’s old glories and imperialistic past.

Word cloud based on last 2,549 tweets from President Erdoğan’s Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

  1. bir: one
  2. Türkiye: Turkey
  3. biz: we
  4. tüm: all
  5. yeni: new
  6. ediyorum: I would
  7. büyük: big
  8. millet: nation
  9. çok: very
  10. daha: more
  11. belediye: municipality
  12. baŞkan: president
  13. adayimiz: our candidate
  14. diliyorum: I wish
  15. yil: year
  16. Asia
  17. asla: never
  18. devam: continuation
  19. terör: terror
  20. devlet: state

*Governed population on Twitter figure via Digital News Report.

President Joko Widodo

assumed office October 2014

Date JoinedSeptember 2011
Tweets806
Twitter Followers9,140,000
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
(2015 figure)
16,800,000*
Governed Population265,186,200
GDP/Capita$3,346
Freedom Score (out of 100)65
Average Number of Tweets Per Day0.9**
Exclamation Marks Per Week.18

President Widodo has signed his initials (JKW) on 777 of the 806 tweets on his account. While many of the other leaders have disclaimers on their accounts saying that tweets are written by staff unless designated with the leader’s initials, President Widodo has spun this norm and seems to use it to personalize his social media presence even further. This warm presence can be seen in his account’s word frequency highest scores including ‘come on!’ and ‘congratulations.’ However, he also takes a pragmatic approach to his tweets, as can be seen with the frequency of the word ‘economy’- this was a unique high-scoring entry among the accounts analyzed

Twitter was instrumental in his election and he excels at social media in general. Read more:

**It seems that while President Widodo joined Twitter in 2011, he did not begin posting until (or he reset his account on) June 20th, 2015. His tweets per day were calculated based on this date and it holds up based on the pace at which he posts on his account during this project’s research period.

Word cloud based on all 806 tweets from President Widodo’s Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

  1. kita: we
  2. Indonesia
  3. saya: I
  4. harus: must
  5. selamat: congratulations
  6. hari: day
  7. rakyat: people
  8. bisa: can
  9. ekonomi: economy
  10. semua: all
  11. tahun: year
  12. negara: country
  13. bersama: together
  14. bangsa: nation
  15. ayo: come on!
  16. semoga: hopefully
  17. tidak: no
  18. terus: continue
  19. baru: new
  20. masyarakat: community

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum

Prime Minister

Vice President

assumed office February 2006

Date JoinedJune 2009
Tweets5,126
Twitter Followers8,560,000
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
(2015 figure)
56% of population (approximately 5,297,800 users)
Governed Population9,460,400
GDP/Capita$40,439
Freedom Score (out of 100)20
Average Number of Tweets Per Day1.65
Exclamation Marks Per Week (in English posts)0

Sheikh Mohammed posts regularly in English in addition to Arabic as the word cloud shows, but the word frequency also tells this. High-scoring entries include not only the UAE and its greatest city, but in the top 15  are also ‘Indonesia,’ ‘world’ (in English), ‘Global’ and ‘the world.’

The UAE and Sheikh Mohammed himself are famous for technological advancement and global partnerships to bring that about. The presence of ‘future’ in English and Arabic and the words mentioned above suggest that he uses his Twitter account to promote this goal.

This is also a religiously conservative and nationalistic country, and the presence of ‘Allah,’ ‘Zayed’ and ‘Mohammed’ (though this is also his name) in the top 20 results, combined with the other words, sketch the contradiction (to Westerners) at the heart of this wealthy, decidedly not free nation.

Sheikh Mohammed’s tweets are extremely dignified and often interesting. It is not obvious whether or not he or his staff post his content, but the level of engagement with the platform is high. He is the most followed leader in the Arab world, and the only Middle-Eastern leader to make the top 10 most followed leaders of the world.

Note: The President of the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, does not have a public Twitter account, but Sheikh Mohammed plays a very significant part in governance of the state.

Word cloud based on the most recent 3,171 tweets from HH Sheikh Mohammed’s Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

  1. اليوم: today
  2. الإمارات, الامارات: United Arab Emirates
  3. UAE
  4. الله: Allah
  5. today
  6. دبي: Dubai
  7. Indonesia
  8. دولة: Country
  9. زايد: Zayed (Wikipedia disabmiguation)
  10. world
  11. الدولة: Country
  12. Dubai
  13. العالمية: Global
  14. العالم: the world
  15. new
  16. عام: Public
  17. المستقبل: the future
  18. future
  19. محمد: Mohammed
  20. الحكومية: Governmental organizations

President Enrique Peña Nieto

assumed office December 2012

Date JoinedMarch 2007
Tweets5,248
Twitter Followers6,980,000
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
(2016 figure)
9,620,000
Governed Population129,843,600
GDP/Capita$9,005
Freedom Score (out of 100)65
Average Number of Tweets Per Day2.37*
Exclamation Marks Per Week (in English posts)1.66

Word cloud based on the most recent 3,065 tweets from President Peña Nieto’s Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

  1. México
  2. hoy: today
  3. mexicanos: Mexicans
  4. país: country
  5. felicidades: congratulations
  6. gran: great
  7. nacional: national
  8. @gobrep
  9. día: day
  10. compromiso: compromise
  11. gobierno: government
  12. reconocimiento: recognition
  13. familiares: relatives
  14. vida: life
  15. desarrollo: development
  16. condolencias: condolences
  17. presidente: president
  18. @gobmx
  19. trabajo: job
  20. solidaridad: solidarity

Resources:

Twitter Moment Timeline of President Trump’s visit with President Peña Nieto in 2016

*While President Peña Nieto joined Twitter in 2007, it appears his first public Tweet did not occur until November 8th, 2011. This was the date used to calculate average number of tweets per day.

King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud

(Also serves as Prime Minister)

reign began January 2015

Date JoinedJanuary 2013
Tweets320
Twitter Followers6,740,000
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
(2016 figure)
4,990,000
Governed Population33,200,510
GDP/Capita$20,482
Freedom Score (out of 100)10
Average Number of Tweets Per Day.18
Exclamation Marks Per WeekN/A

Word cloud based on all 320 tweets from King Salman of Saudi Arabia’s Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

  1. الأمير: the prince
  2. يستقبل: Receive
  3. رئيس, الرئيس: President
  4. المملكة: The kingdon
  5. الملك: The King
  6. عبدالعزيز: Abdul Azeez (Saudi Arabia founder)
  7. البلدين: the two countries
  8. وزير: minister
  9. التعاون: Cooperat(e)
  10. نيابة: Prosecution
  11. يلتقي: Meet
  12. المشترك: Common
  13. الدفاع: Defense
  14. الله: Allah
  15. مجلس: board
  16. اليوم: Today
  17. ذات: Related
  18. يصل: Reach
  19. الحرمين: Haramain (high speed rail project)
  20. يبحث: he searches

President Juan Manuel Santos

assumed office August 2010

Date JoinedAugust 2009
Tweets16,200
Twitter Followers5,220,000
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
(2015 figure)
6,000,000*
Governed Population49,236,044
GDP/Capita$6,056
Freedom Score (out of 100)64
Average Number of Tweets Per Day5.37
Exclamation Marks Per Week (in English posts)5.37

Word cloud based on the most recent 2,630 tweets from President Santos’ Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

  1. paz: peace
  2. Colombia
  3. país: country
  4. hoy: today
  5. colomianos: Colombians
  6. millones: millions
  7. mejor: better
  8. gracias: Thank you
  9. mil: thousand
  10. año: year
  11. gobierno: government
  12. Mocoa (devastating 2017 landslide)
  13. apoyo: support for
  14. gran: great
  15. mundo: world
  16. construcción: construction
  17. educación: education
  18. inversión: inversion
  19. familias: families
  20. seguridad: security
  21. solidaridad: solidarity

*SourceOnline around the World: A Geographic Encyclopedia of the Internet, Social Media, and Mobile Apps (2017), edited by by Laura M. Steckman and Marilyn J. Andrews (p.57)

Prime Minister Mohd Najib Tun Razak

assumed office April 2009

Date JoinedSeptember 2008
Tweets12,200
Twitter Followers3,920,00
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
(2015 figure)
1,700,00
Governed Population31,802,640
GDP/Capita$9,768
Freedom Score (out of 100)44
Average Number of Tweets Per Day3.63
Exclamation Marks Per Week7

Word cloud based on most recent 3,072 tweets from Prime Minister Mohd Najib Tun Razak’s Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

  1. saya: me
  2. UTK: Special Actions Unit of Royal Police
  3. KPD: financial cooperative police society
  4. #bajet2017
  5. Malaysia
  6. negara: country
  7. Allah
  8. #bajet2018
  9. hari: day
  10. negara: country
  11. DLM: Digital Lifestyle Malaysia
  12. AMP: Corporation that maintains Malaysian Sea Surveillance System (MSSS)
  13. tahun: year
  14. semua: all
  15. kerajaan: government
  16. rakyat: people
  17. insya: (insyaAllah)
  18. rumah: home

Note: Malaysia’s Sultan, Muhammad V of Kelantan, does not have a Twitter account

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

assumed office November 2015

Date JoinedMarch 2008
Tweets16,700
Twitter Followers3,840,00
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
(2015 figure)
7,300,00
Governed Population36,765,000
GDP/Capita$43,249
Freedom Score (out of 100)99
Average Number of Tweets Per Day4.72
Exclamation Marks Per Week29.8

Word cloud based on most recent 1838 tweets from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

  1. Canada
  2. nous: we
  3. today
  4. merci: Thank you
  5. thanks
  6. sur: sure or Submission Under Review, relating to health products
  7. nos, notre: our
  8. Canadians, Canadiens
  9. aujourd’hui: today
  10. day
  11. tous: all
  12. working
  13. plus: more
  14. help
  15. together
  16. congratulations
  17. meeting
  18. work
  19. AMP: clean energy company, Administrative Monetary Penalty System (AMPS) or Accredited Mortgage Professional
  20. great

President Nicolás Maduro

assumed office April 2013

Date JoinedMarch 2013
Tweets89,000- vast majority retweets
Twitter Followers3,280,000
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
no data- high percentage assumed
Governed Population32,149,840
GDP/Capita*$12,793
Freedom Score (out of 100)30
Average Number of Tweets Per Day43.97- vast majority retweets
Exclamation Marks Per Week (in English posts)89, often on retweets

Word cloud constructed from most recent 3,000 tweets from President Madoro’s Twitter. Of these, only 136 were not retweets- these tweets are the basis for the word cloud.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

  1. pueblo: town
  2. patria: homeland
  3. Venezuela
  4. hoy: today
  5. paz: peace
  6. comandante: commander
  7. presidente: president
  8. Chávez
  9. venezolano: Venezuelan
  10. Victoria
  11. nuevo: new
  12. 2017
  13. día: day
  14. junto: together
  15. lucha: fight
  16. pendientes: slopes
  17. siempre: always
  18. amor: love
  19. bolivariana: Bolivarian
  20. Bolívar
  21. desarollo: development

*Source: Trading Economics

President Emmanuel Macron

assumed office May 2017

Date JoinedOctober 2013
Tweets5,277
Twitter Followers2,400,000
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country
(2016 figure)*
5,600,00
Governed Population65,088,350
GDP/Capita$36,206
Freedom Score (out of 100)90
Average Number of Tweets Per Day3.49
Exclamation Marks Per Week5.36

Word cloud based on most recent 2911 tweets from President Macron’s Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

  1. France
  2. veux: want
  3. Europe
  4. pays: country
  5. fair: make
  6. politique: policy
  7. français: French
  8. faut, devons: must
  9. projet: project
  10. fait: fact
  11. ensemble: together
  12. #2017ledébat
  13. vie: life
  14. république: republic
  15. ans: years
  16. avenir: to come up
  17. monde: world
  18. #macronprésident
  19. #legranddébat
  20. président: president

*Figure via ExtraDigital

President Vladimir Putin

assumed office May 2012

Date JoinedDecember 2011
Tweets2,586
Twitter Followers2,390,000
Number of Twitter Users in Governed Country (2016 figure)
8,950,000
Governed Population143,979,010
GDP/Capita*$9,093
Freedom Score (out of 100)20
Average Number of Tweets Per Day1.19
Exclamation Marks Per WeekN/A

President Putin uses Twitter to distribute his worldview and support his public narrative like all the others leaders profiled on this site. However, his relationship with the platform is unique for two reasons.

First, he has a separate English language version of his account with different content than his main Russian account, as can be seen on the ‘Compare Twitter Feeds’ page of this site. This English account has about a third of the followers of the Russian one, but both are official. The motivation behind having such an account is presumably a desire to specifically target Western audiences, and give them a chance to learn firsthand about Russia and its strategic and apparently gregarious, public-spirited leader.

Second, under his leadership, Twitter evolved from a tool for persuasion and influencing to a manipulated, manipulate-able force capable of shaping the elections of the most powerful country in the world. The weaponization of Twitter changed the world, whether through its long term application or its initial results; President Trump’s election has already had dire consequences for millions of people.

Word cloud constructed from most recent 2,567 tweets from President Putin’s Twitter.

Content captured and analyzed via Nvivo.

  1. встреча, заседание, совещание: (a, the) meeting
  2. путин, путина: Putin
  3. владимир, владимира: Vladimir
  4. президентом, президента: (the) President
  5. россии: Russia
  6. совета: council
  7. рабочая: working
  8. указ: decree
  9. изменения: change
  10. министром: the Minister
  11. федерации: federation
  12. российской: Russian
  13. закон: law
  14. разговор: conversation
  15. телефонный: telephone
  16. премьер: prime minister
  17. соболезнования: condolences
  18. подписан: signed
  19. республики: republics
  20. назначен: appointed

Unless otherwise noted:

Population figures via Worldometers   •   Twitter users per country via Statista  •   Freedom score & GDP via Freedom House   •   Office term dates via Wikipedia