World Cup fans turn to social media to vent fury

Texting is the most popular social media for those watching the World Cup, according to research by the Internet Advertising Bureau and ESPN.

Lampard in England vs Germany match
Lampard in England vs Germany match

The IAB and ESPN have teamed up to research viewing habits, mobile usage, social media adoption and attitudes to sponsorship over the World Cup.

In Its latest wave, it found that 41% of respondents would be likely to text a friend before the match, 43% during and 45% afterwards.

The joint research uses a panel of 3,300 UK sports fans. Other findings reveal that a quarter (26%) expect to watch weekday World Cup matches via the internet at work, and a third (33%) of respondents said they were “more likely” to watch games online in 2010 compared to 2006.

In addition, 27% said they were “more likely” to follow games using on their mobiles in 2010 compared to 2006 and one in twelve (8%) of those surveyed went even further, stating that they were more likely to actually watch games on their mobiles when compared to the previous World Cup.

The research was undertaken before England’s defeat by Germany last night (27 June), which was marred by a decision to disallow a goal by Frank Lampard.

When asked when they’d be most likely to comment on a World Cup website, 17% said they’d choose to before a game, 21% said they would afterwards and only 7% said they would during a game.

Last night, fans were venting their fury across the Internet. By far this is the most popular activity, which is incentive-driven and 55% of the panel say they are taking part in World Cup competitions online.

A further 44% were likely to watch and share videos using sites such as YouTube, whilst almost a quarter (24%) were likely to visit dedicated Facebook pages. Meanwhile 18% of men planned to listen to podcasts and 18% said they would be downloading World Cup apps on their mobiles.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here