As our colleagues in JWT noted, the 2014 World Cup will be the first truly mobile tournament, with smartphone-equipped fans keeping up with the action wherever they are.

Viewers are also using their phones to discuss the action, a habit that looks likely to help make this World Cup the biggest social media event ever, as Reuters and the AP report today, looking at Facebook and Twitter data, respectively. Even before the World Cup began, Twitter reported there had been more posts about the topic than for the entire 2010 tournament.

According to research by GlobalWebIndex, drawn from a survey of social networkers in Brazil, the U.K. and the U.S. who are watching the World Cup, Facebook is by far the most popular social network for getting updates. Some 94 percent say they’re using it as they watch games, while 59 percent are connecting with Twitter during matches.

Data point 06.30.14

The chart above, which draws on GlobalWebIndex data from Day 1 of the tournament, found that British viewers are the least social, while Brazilians are most apt to share their views over social media and even take selfies of themselves watching a game.

Naturally, brands are attempting to join the conversation. Many are responding in real time to high and low points of the tournament, like last week’s notorious biting incident, as Mashable reports. And Reuters reports on the social media battle between Adidas and Nike, which includes an Adidas-run Twitter feed for the World Cup’s official match ball, dubbed the Brazuca, which currently has more than 2.6 million followers.

(Image courtesy of Nike Risk Everything)

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