Issue 3 

Overview | Introduction  | Arab Women and Social Media  |  Mapping Facebook  | Youth, Gender & Language | Mapping Twitter | Conclusions | Annexes | Acknowledgment  | Media Coverage

Mapping Twitter

Twitter Users

As with Facebook, Turkey dominates in the number of Twitter users, with 589,260 users, followed by the Egypt, which leads the Arab countries with 129,711 Twitter users (see Figure 18). The top five Arab countries in terms of number of Twitter users are Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, UAE and Bahrain.

Figure 18: Number of Active Twitter Users in the Arab Region plus Iran, Israel and Turkey
(Average number for September, 2011) 
When it comes to Twitter penetration as a percentage of population on a regional level, Bahrain and Kuwait lead the way with 3.43% and 3.37% Twitter penetration rates respectively. Contrary to Facebook, the top five countries in terms of Twitter penetration are all from the GCC, with Qatar, UAE, and Saudi Arabia taking the remaining slots (Figure 19). Arab countries can be divided into the following categories:
1.       High Penetration: These countries’ Twitter user penetration is above 3%[1], indicating a high use of Twitter in their societies relative to other Arab countries.
2.       Emerging countries: These countries’ Twitter user penetration ranges from 1%-2%, indicating a medium penetration of Twitter users relative to other Arab countries.
3.       Developing users: These countries have Twitter user penetration rates are under 1%, indicating room for growth.
Figure 19: Twitter Penetration in the Arab Region plus Iran, Israel and Turkey
(Average for September 2011)*
As with Facebook penetration, the populations used in calculating Twitter penetration are based on ILO statistics, except for the GCC countries, for which more recent official GCC population numbers were used.

[1] This cutoff percentage is lower than the previous reports (3%-5%), due to the use of official GCC population numbers instead of ILO numbers.

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