The Battle for Time - Week of May 15

May 24, 2016 Ophelie Zalcmanis-Lai, Content Editor

What started out as a normal day in the House of Commons quickly erupted into complete and utter chaos.

All because of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s elbow.

Before a crucial vote regarding the proposed legislation for physician-assisted suicide, it appeared that several NDP were physically blocking Conservative whip Gordon Brown from taking his seat and thus delaying the proceedings. Trudeau strode over (while allegedly saying “get the fuck out of the way” to the MPs) and pulled Brown away.

In the process, his elbow hit NDP MP Ruth Ellen Brosseau. There were no pandas cuddled this time. 

This is what captured our minutes this week. 

Here's why: 

1. It exploded on mainstream media, and boy were the headlines dramatic. 

Regardless of whether or not viewers thought #elbowgate was complete garbage or a legitimate concern for Canadians, the international coverage got people talking about Canada (maybe for the first time in their lives).

The headlines’ combinations of brevity and sharp wording are what captured viewers’ attentions and minutes. It’s also what spurred entirely different and ranging conversations such as violence against womenparliamentary freedoms and being hangry.

In fact #elbowgate has left such an impression with its headline staying power, that people are still talking about it a week later.  

2. Social media, particularly Twitter, had a field day with this. Not only was the hashtag #elbowgate formed, but “Trudeau” and “House of Commons” became trending topics too. 

Commentary ranged from grave to absolutely hysterical, and came from politicians and witty ordinary citizens alike. 

The hashtag was so cleverly dubbed that it could be effortless built upon by virtually anyone.

3. #Elbowgate managed to inspire all the content you could think of, from memes to gifs to videos.

John Oliver of Last Week Tonight even found some time to grill Canada.

People took this one incident and ran wild with creativity. It was much more than one viral hit video; #elbowgate spurred UGC overnight. 

So whether or not #elbowgate really matters politically speaking, it still managed to draw so much reaction that it reached international headlines, exploded across social media and spurred endless content.

We do want to point out that there was a very close runner-up this week. It has to deal with a lot of happiness and a lot of Chewbacca. We think you know what we're talking about, but just in case: 

Now that's viral marketing.

At the end of the day, people engage with content by lending their minutes. Content is successful when its battery is fully charged with attention. 

What will win this week?


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The Battle for Time - Week of May 15.