Crisis Continues into Autumn

September Stories

September was a busy month for news in Ireland with 16 stories measured in our monthly Ignite Score analysis - the stories that matter to Irish people. For the second month in a row, the refugee crisis topped the Ignite score list. Irish people were still concerned about the crisis, with 73% of people aware that Ireland will welcome 4,000 refugees into the country.

The same amount of people were aware of the Volkswagen emission issue and men slightly more likely to be aware of the worldwide scandal. Men were also more aware that water may exist on Mars. This story was the third highest on our September list.

Stories measured in September 2015

  • Ireland beat Canada and Romania in World Cup
  • Ireland will take in 4,000 refugees
  • Jack Grealish declaring for England
  • Over 250,000 attend Ploughing Championship
  • The Dublin Web Summit moves to Lisbon
  • The Pope drops hint he will visit Ireland
  • U2 confirm and sell out homecoming gigs in Dublin
  • Volkswagen emission issue
  • All-Ireland hurling and football finals
  • Allegations about British Prime Minister and a pig
  • Arts Minister permits Star Wars to film on Skellig Michael
  • eircom rebranding as eir
  • Electric Picnic attracts 50,000 people
  • Evidence of water on Mars
  • Fennelly Report describes Enda Kenny
  • Four Dublin councils launch a number of prefabricated homes

With 16 stories measured this month, the story with the lowest awareness was the Fennelly report which looked into the situation surrounding  the previous Garda commissioner leaving his role. While this story was lowest in terms of awareness, it had one of the highest importance scores.

The story with the second highest importance score (after the refugee crisis) was the proposed plans by Dublin councils to house homeless families in prefabricated homes

Stories which matter to women.

As we have seen in previous months, men engage more than women with news stories (particularly economic and political stories). Stories which resonated more with women this month were event based - the Ploughing Championship, Electric Picnic and also the re-branding of eircom to eir. Those under the age of 44 years old were more likely to be engaged with the story about Mars potentially having water, but also allegations about British Prime Minister and a pig.

Sporting moments

The two biggest sporting stories in September were the Irish rugby teams first two games in the Rugby World Cup and the Hurling and Football All Ireland Finals. Both these stories scored equally in terms of awareness and importance, and placing fourth and fifth on the ignite score ranking.

The Pope's Children

The Pope's last visit to Ireland was in 1979, and therefore hints about the Pope visiting Ireland in the coming years may have had an impact. However, those born after 1979, thought Star Wars on Skellig Michael was a more important story than the Pope visiting. Also, more people were aware of the Ploughing Championship than the Pope's visit.

Finally, with a lot of talk of the tech economy in Ireland in recent years, it is no great surprise that people felt that the Web Summit leaving Dublin was an important story. The re-branding of eircom to eir had one of the highest awareness scores in September (68%) but one of the lowest importance scores (46%) in the month. It will be crucial that the company follows up on the brand promises about making Ireland a more technically connected country. 

What stories should we cover in October?

Thank you for your suggestions this month.

We will be measuring the response to Budget 2016 and Irish rugby, as well as local tragedies, but what other stories would you like to know more about.