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Analyzing the climate change debate on Twitter – content and differences between genders
 

Analyzing the climate change debate on Twitter – content and differences between genders

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Results from a study about differences in the use of hashtags and mentioning of other usernames in tweets about climate change from male and female tweeters. Presentation at the #WebSci14 ...

Results from a study about differences in the use of hashtags and mentioning of other usernames in tweets about climate change from male and female tweeters. Presentation at the #WebSci14 conference.

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    Analyzing the climate change debate on Twitter – content and differences between genders Analyzing the climate change debate on Twitter – content and differences between genders Presentation Transcript

    • Analyzing the climate change debate on Twitter – content and differences between genders WebSci2014 Kim Holmberg* & Iina Hellsten *kim.holmberg@abo.fi Department of Organization Sciences VU University Amsterdam The Netherlands
    • We studied differences in the use of hashtags and mentioning of other usernames in tweets about climate change from male and female tweeters.
    • DATA Tweets containing the words “climate change” were collected between October 26, 2013, and January 10, 2014, via Twitter’s API. A total of 94,579 (17.0%) tweets were identified as sent by female tweeters and 145,275 (26.1%) tweets were identified as sent by male tweeters. For 56.9% of the tweets the tweeters’ gender could not be determined.
    • METHODS The hashtags and usernames that were proportionately more frequently used by either male or female tweeters in comparison to the other were analyzed and coded according to the users’ stance in the climate change debate and categorized by type of account or context of hashtag. The coding was done by the authors and inter-coder agreement was measured with Cohen’s Kappa.
    • Female tweeters mentioned proportionately more frequently hashtags that were connected to different campaigns and online movements related to climate change, and male tweeters used proportionately more frequently hashtags related to politics or to climate change and environmental issues on a general level. HASHTAGS
    • While female tweeters mention organizations frequently in their tweets, men do not. Female tweeters mentioned usernames related to different campaigns in their tweets, while none of the usernames mentioned more frequently by male tweeters were related to campaigns or online movements. (Cohen’s kappa: 0.765) USERNAMES
    • Female tweeters mentioned significantly more convinced users in their tweets and retweets, and male tweeters mentioned significantly more sceptics, while among the usernames mentioned more frequently by female tweeters there were no sceptics at all. (Chi-square=31.28, p=0.000001, Cohen’s kappa=0.522) STANCE IN THE DEBATE
    • A closer look at the tweets revealed however that some of the usernames mentioned proportionately more frequently by either group were due to frequent retweeting. * *In another study (in preparation) we show that retweeting has a significant impact on the results and that the gender differences are even greater when retweets are removed from the data
    • CONCLUSIONS The results indicate that while female tweeters tend to show more interest and belief in the anthropogenic impact on climate change and towards campaigns and organizations involved in the debate, male tweeters are more concerned with politics related to climate change and connect more with those that have a sceptic stance in the climate change debate.
    • Kim Holmberg Department of Organization Sciences VU University Amsterdam The Netherlands kim.holmberg@abo.fi http://kimholmberg.fi @kholmber Acknowledgements The authors acknowledge the support of the Dutch Scientific Organization in the Netherlands (NWO-ORA grant 464-10-077). Thank you for your attention