YouTube Viewcount Stalemate

I had another look at YouTube viewcounts for the major parties and little has changed since my post a week ago.

For the Conservatives, the totals for the most popular ads haven’t changed at all: “How did we get here?” stays at 851,000; the “Not as Advertised” Trudeau/Trump comparison at 501,000 in English and 213,000 in French; and Andrew Scheer’s “where I grew up” backstory ad at 441,000. And new ads have gathered little traction: a “time for you to get ahead” ad released 3 weeks ago with a viewcount of 12,000 and another “time for you to get ahead” ad focusing on retirement released 2 weeks ago with a viewcount of 8000.

For the Liberals, the basic “choose forward” ad has increased from 50,000 views 2 weeks ago to 58,000 views and its French version has stayed at 214,000 views. An ad about gun control featuring Bill Blair released two weeks ago hit 15,000 views and has stayed at that level this week. And most new ads under the choose forward rubric have gotten fewer than 1000 views; the most popular is one on climate change featuring Justin Trudeau, released three weeks ago, that has gotten 4400 views.

The NDP’s “Different” ad about Jagmeet Singh has increased from 6000 to 7000 views this week and its French counterpart “Jagmeet se bat pour vous” has increased from 51,000 to 58,000 views.

I checked Bloc Quebecois ads, of which there are very few, and one released at the start of the campaign received 2400 views and another released earlier this week has only 444 views.

Many of the major parties’ ads are being broadcast frequently on network television and sent out repeatedly on Facebook, but voters are not going to YouTube to see them again. The conclusion I draw at this point is that no ad is going viral online in a way that would forecast that party is enroute to a majority government. Through the lens of YouTube viewcounts I’m seeing nothing similar to the momentum that took the Liberals to a majority in the last election. This result is consistent with the minority government that traditional public opinion polls are forecasting.

There are, however, still a few days for new developments, such as Citizen Obama’s surprise endorsement of Justin Trudeau, or Andrew Scheer’s claim that parliamentary convention gives the party with the most seats the first opportunity to form a government. Therefore, I will check the YouTube counts one last time late Sunday to see if anything has changed on the eve of Election Day.

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