Racism, Farage and Clarkson

The political story of the last 24 hours is clear: Ukip’s leader Nigel Farage would scrap racial discrimination laws in order to set free our employers from the shackles that bind them. Regardless of one’s feelings about this (Fraser Nelson thinks the SNP’s anti-rich bigotry is more appalling, while naturally the Huffington Post takes a different line), there’s little doubt it’s driven much content on social media in the last 24 hours; in the last hour alone, over a thousand tweets specifically mentioning Ukip have been sent.

Here in Reading we’re collecting election-related Tweets, and so this seemed like an good opportunity to visualise what’s going on. Below is a word cloud composed of two types of words: firstly terms in green, such as party names and references, and other proper nouns, and the second set if plain old words, and how frequently they occur. The font size is dictated by the frequency of the word or term: bigger for more commonly found terms.

Wordcloud 12 March

Unsurprisingly Ukip figure prominently in the terms, but amongst the words we see: legislation, racist, racial, discrimination, equality, scrap, rid, laws, and Nigel.

One interesting word there is misrepresent; it’s often claimed that Ukip are misrepresented – could that be what’s happening here?

Another term, tucked away in small font is one that keeps rumbling along: Clarkson.