Greece is about to take a $172 billion bailout from the rest of Europe, but there are strings attached. Greece will have to spend less on government programs and workers’ pay and allow European officials to supervise its finances.
The bailout package might prevent total economic collapse. But many Greeks are worried about the changes that the financial rescue will bring — and they’ve been talking about their fears on Twitter.
Crimson Hexagon analyzed more than 17,000 tweets about the Greek bailout. We looked only at tweets about the financial negotiations sent over the last month from within Greece.
Overwhelmingly, Greek Twitter users were concerned with the austerity measures and pay cuts that a deal would bring. Fifteen percent of tweets were worried about the cuts would mean for the Greek economy and society as a whole. Thirteen percent of tweeters expressed concern that their pay might be cut, that they might lose benefits or that they would lose their job entirely. Twelve percent doubted if the planned cuts would actually lessen the Greek deficit.
Other Greeks used Twitter to blame their government or society as a whole for the problem. Seven percent of bailout tweets said that tax evasion was the major reason for Greece’s economic woes, ten percent accused the government of being corrupt and fifteen percent of tweets suggested that democracy, born and nurtured in Greece, was now “lost.”
And as austerity riots broke out in the Greek capital of Athens, locals took to Twitter to send pictures and reports from the scene. Fifteen percent of tweets over the past month that discussed the bailout mentioned those protests, workers’ strikes or police brutality.
Pieces of this blog post appear courtesy of Mashable. Crimson Hexagon provided analysis to Mashable for this story.