Changing World Cup fans

Jul 13, 2014

Shan Carter and Kevin Quealy for the Upshot have a look at sports fandom once again using Facebook usage as a proxy. This time they examined shifting fan support during the World Cup.

A new analysis by Facebook’s data science team analyzed migrations of fan support from one country to another throughout the tournament, stage by stage. It’s based partly on the contents of people’s posts, which means it is largely a reflection of the views of people who follow the World Cup at least to some degree. In the chart above showing global opinion, Brazil, the U.S. and Mexico have a strong influence on the results, because of their size, Facebook population and high interest in the World Cup.

Keep in mind World Cup posts for a specific country aren’t counted once that team dropped from the tournament. So it’s not so much shifting fandom as it is who people rooted for during each round.

Be sure to check out the whole article to see how fandom shifted by country. (Congrats, Germany.)

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