With days until the same-sex marriage postal vote deadline, a new study has predicted a “narrow defeat” of the “yes” campaign.
Griffith University’s Big Data and Smart Analytics Lab reviewed opinions across Twitter and results point to 49.17 per cent of participants voting in support of marriage equality, The Conversation reports.
Researchers David Tuffley and Bela Stantic used “uncannily accurate” prediction software to analyse 458,565 anonymised Australian tweets collecting across October – the same system also predicted Donald Trump’s US election win in 2016.
Despite opinion polls showing “overwhelming” support for a Yes result (72 per cent), over-55s were underrepresented on Twitter – with relevant adjustments to the sample data knocking the support rates right back.
“According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), which is conducting the postal vote, from the total number of people in Australia eligible to vote, around 36 per cent are over 55,” they said.
“If we consider that the same proportion of over-55s and under-55s do not vote, then based on the opinion of the 207,287 unique social media users, the total support for the Yes position comes down to 49 per cent.”
The outcome of the same-sex marriage postal vote will be revealed by the ABS on November 15.
The very last chance to submit your voting forms is November 7, 6pm – so if you haven’t submitted, your final window to participate is fast closing.