Twitter reacts as Sir David Attenborough receives Peace Prize

Fans are rejoicing but some feared tragedy as Sir David Attenborough trended on Twitter after receiving the Indira Gandhi Peace Prize and releasing documentary Extinction: The Facts.

Twitter fans of Sir David were overjoyed and full of praise this morning when they woke to find him trending.

“Kick start your day with Sir David Attenborough trending – guaranteed to send blood rushing to your heart,” tweeted Sarah Eaglesfield.

“Sir David Attenborough is the greatest human being to ever live and that isn’t up for debate,” tweeted Ben Bromley.

Some even revered him as royalty, with Michael Hows tweeting: “Sir David Attenborough trending – OH NO!!!!! Why was his brother (Dickie – a very affable man) made LORD Attenborough – surely David more than deserves this accolade too, if not King David.”

But others had a shock, fearing 94 year-old Sir David’s trending was tragic news.

“Don’t scare me like that Twitter…” Derrick Graffius tweeted, adding: “Sir David Attenborough is trending.  You always worry that it means a sudden and unexpected death. That is one death that will absolutely devastate me.  And at his age it gets more likely with each passing year.”

ColinTheWarriorMonkey tweeted: “Dear @Twitter, I’ve just seen Sir David Attenborough trending, can you do us all a favour and put [not dead] after the names of our senior national treasures so we don’t all panic. Thanks.”

And Rick Smith tweeted: “When you see Sir David Attenborough trending. Phew, he’s still alive.”

Trending on Twitter is achieved by generating a popularity spike, which is a high number of likes and retweets in a short space of time, and there are two reasons why Sir David is trending now: a BBC programme and a prestigious peace award.

Sir David’s TV programme, Extinction: The Facts, first aired on BBC1 on 13 September.

BBC News (UK)’s tweet: “Sir David Attenborough makes stark warning about species extinction”, gained 2,308 likes and 943 retweets within hours of posting, and there were a number of tweets quoting Sir David.

“His final line packs a powerful punch: ‘What happens next’, says Sir David, ‘is up to every one of us.'” Tweeted Ian Wright.

“‘But above all it will require a change in perspective. A change from viewing nature as something that’s optional ‘or nice to have’ to the single greatest ally we have, in restoring balance to our world.’ Sir David Attenborough,” tweeted Simon Leadbeater.

Sir David is the 2019 winner of the Indira Gandhi Peace Prize, which is given for working towards ensuring international peace and development and that scientific discoveries are used to further the scope of freedom and better humanity.

He received his award at a virtual presentation last week, September 7, and tweets about this also spiked popularity with likes and retweets.

“The Indira Gandhi Memorial Trust will be presenting the Indira Gandhi Peace Prize 2019 to Sir David Attenborough in the presence of former PM (of India) Manmohan Singh, Congress President Smt. Sonia Gandhi, Shri Rahul Gandhi and other esteemed guests. Watch live on our SM platforms.” (September 6 2020) tweeted by Congress, @INCIndia, gained 1,351 likes, 480 retweets, and 11.9K views of the video.

2,482 likes and 317 retweets went to Ashok Gehlot’s tweet the following day: “Congratulations to broadcaster and natural historian Sir David Attenborough for receiving the Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace Disarmament and Development for 2019. Sir Attenborough has been working tirelessly to raise awareness to preserve and protect nature.”

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