It’s been a busy week for MEPs in Strasbourg. As always, many have also found time to tweet about some of the key topics discussed in plenary. We have analysed more than 10,000 tweets and, contrary to our initial expectations, the #PanamaPapers and the effectiveness of existing EU measures against tax-dodging did not emerge as the number one topic.

Gianmaria Sisti
Consultant

The main focus of this week’s MEP tweets was actually the new EU directive on Passenger Name Records (PNR) approved on Thursday and whether this would be useful tool in the fight against terrorism or not.

In addition to these two topics, MEPs’ Twitter conversations also focused on the new EU data protection rules, the Brexit saga (with many MEPs still very active) and the renewed authorisation of herbicide glyphosate.

The top five keywords and hashtags were:

#PNR451 times / Panama365 times (#PanamaPapers259 times) / Data327 times (#EUdatap119 times)/ #Brexit: 256 times / glyphosate129 times.

Let’s take a closer look at PNR and the Panama Papers discussions:

Many MEPs raised their voice to support the PNR directive which will force airlines to hand EU countries’ passenger data for all flights from a third country to the EU and vice versa. Opponents expressed their concerns over privacy and proportionality issues. The most active MEPs on #PNR were:

The most shared tweets were:

Jean-Luc Mélenchon, who raised concerns over the #PNR vote

 

González Pons, who on the contrary fully supported the #PNR Directive

 

Rachida Dati, who applauded the EP finally taking responsibility

 

Regarding the online debate around the Mossack Fonseca or Panama Papers scandal, MEPs asked the European Commission and member states to step up their efforts to fight tax evasion and money laundering. The top three most active MEPs talking about the Panama Papers were:

Mr Albrecht and Mr Boni have been certainly busy on the Twittersphere this week as they feature on the top three for the most discussed topics. The most shared tweets on the Panama Papers were:

Jean-Luc Mélenchon (yes, again), who urged for common action to tackle tax evasion

 

Julia Reda, who was concerned that the vote over tax transparency would have limited the work of whistle-blowers and journalists

 

Michèle Rivasi, who attacked the FN group for their opposition to an “inquiry committee”

 

See you at the next EP plenary 😉

@Giammabxl