Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq is one of the most popular politicians in Malaysia. As of May 6, he has 717 thousand followers on his Twitter account.
It is not unusual for him to receive hundreds of responses on Twitter within a day. But for him to have garnered more than a thousand tweets within a day, something big must have happened.
From Syed Saddiq’s Twitter trend, he received roughly 1,600 tweets on May 24. Nevertheless, this did not happen overnight. He started to gain netizens’ attention the day before (on May 23), receiving more than 800 tweets.
On April 18, his Twitter network can be divided to only two clusters, green and blue.
The green cluster discussed Qatar representatives visit to the Youth and Sports Ministry to enhance the bilateral relationship between the two countries. Syed Saddiq was the influencer in this group and the responses were generally positive.
Meanwhile, the blue cluster has @2Pawtect as its influencer. The account is run by IICS students who are supporting WWF Malaysia in protecting the Malayan tiger.
As part of their campaign, they tweeted an image of Syed Saddiq sitting with a plush tiger in an empty stadium. Again, the feedbacks on Syed Saddiq were mostly positive.
Looking at Syed Saddiq’s Twitter network on a busy day (on April 24), the network was massively extended, increasing the cluster numbers to five. The pink, orange and purple clusters were spawned.
The biggest cluster, which is pink, consist of numerous influencers such as @TharmaPillai, @johnmayermy, @MG92_2, @limweijiet and @harriszainul.
All of them were tweeting about Syed Saddiq’s revelation that the Crown Prince of Johor Tunku Ismail Idris made political and business demands to Pakatan Harapan. Based on the tweets by these influencers, they are on Syed Saddiq’s side.
The influencers in the orange cluster are neutral when tweeting about Syed’s revelation on TMJ. They consist of Star Online, while account @tanjooilong retweeted news from Star Online.
On the other hand, the green cluster still has Syed Saddiq as its main influencer. However, it expanded with additional influencers from media accounts 501Awani and SinarOnline.
This group tweeted about another sensational statement made by the Youth and Sports Minister on the same day as his revelation on TMJ. And it is about bringing K-pop group BTS to Malaysia in 2020.
Despite BTS being an international sensation in the music scene, not all netizens were supportive on Syed Saddiq’s plan. A poll conducted by @pengundi_sedar, revealed that 92% of those who voted disagreed, while only 8% agreed.
For the purple group, it consists of BTS fans. They are excited on the possibility of the K-pop group performing in Malaysia. This group only mentioned Syed Saddiq, but their focus is on BTS.
Overall, Syed Saddiq became extremely popular on Twitter on April 24 due to two reason, revelation of TMJ’s demands and bringing BTS to Malaysia.
Yet, netizens are more inclined in supporting Syed in his argument with TMJ. On his BTS initiative, netizens were divided, viewing it as just another populist move.