Digital Methods and Social
Media Analytics
Jean Burgess, Axel Bruns, and Darryl Woodford
Media Ecologies Project, CCI
Quee...
DIGITAL METHODS…?
• Datagathering
• Processing
• Analysis
• Re-presentation
• Materiality and ‘nature’ of the digital
‘BIG DATA’ & DIGITAL METHODS
• Big Data as currency across the sciences and social sciences
• Business intelligence & ‘dat...
The map is not the territory
(Korzybski)
…and certainly not the
destination
UNDERSTANDING TWITTER PUBLICS
• #hashtags:
– Useful coordinating mechanism for core discussion
– Relatively easy to captur...
#ROYALWEDDING (29 APR. 2011)
#AUSVOTES (JULY-AUG. 2010): THEMES
#EQNZ: MOST VISIBLE ACCOUNTS, 22 FEB.-7 MAR. 2011
(RETWEETS + @REPLIES RECEIVED)
#EQNZ: VISIBILITY ACROSS EARTHQUAKES (2010-2011)
(Bruns & Burgess, 2012)
HASHTAGMETRICS
(Bruns &
Stieglitz, 2012)
BEYOND HASHTAGS
 Overlapping publics / networks
– What determines their formation and dissolution?
– How do they interact...
THE AUSTRALIAN TWITTERSPHERE?
Follower/followee network:
~120,000 Australian Twitter users
(of ~950,000 known accounts by ...
THEMATIC CLUSTERS
Perth
Marketing / PR
Design
Web
Creative
Farming
Agriculture
Hardline
Conservatives
Conservatives
Journa...
#AUSPOL
Follower/followee network:
~120,000 Australian Twitter users
(of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012)
colour = #...
#AUSVOTES
Follower/followee network:
~120,000 Australian Twitter users
(of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012)
colour =...
#ROYALWEDDING
Follower/followee network:
~120,000 Australian Twitter users
(of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012)
colo...
#MASTERCHEF
Follower/followee network:
~120,000 Australian Twitter users
(of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012)
colour...
THEAUSTRALIAN.COM.AU URLS
Follower/followee network:
~120,000 Australian Twitter users
(of ~950,000 known accounts by earl...
ABC.NET.AU URLS
Follower/followee network:
~120,000 Australian Twitter users
(of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012)
co...
AUSTRALIAN TWITTER NEWS INDEX
http://mappingonlinepublics.net/tag/atnix/
AUSTRALIAN TWITTER NEWS INDEX
BIG BIG DATA: THE FIRST MILLION TWITTER IDS
Twitter IDs 1-1,000,000 (48,000 accounts still in existence)
(see http://mappi...
THE FIRST MILLION: TWEETS SENT
THE FIRST MILLION: TIME ZONES
A NEW MILLION
• 1 million new account IDs (~ 422.000 existing accounts)
• Newly registered on 18/19 Mar. 2013, 16:00-01:00...
TWITTER AS A PROXY
• Tweets, and Twitter Users, are actually informative about
other platforms.
• While not an alternative...
TWITTER AS A PROXY
• While not an alternative to application specific APIs, it
can provide an approximation of growth rate...
TWITTER AS A PROXY: MONTH OF VINES
TWITTER AS A PROXY: DAILY PATTERNS
TWITTER AS A PROXY: HASHTAGS AS
DESCRIPTORS
TWITTER AS A PROXY: YOUTUBERS:
@CHARLESTRIPPY (ID VS. ACCESSION #)
This set of IDs were
apparently never
allocated.
Prank ...
TWITTER AS A PROXY: YOUTUBERS --
@CHARLESTRIPPY (ACC # VS DATE)
PrankvsPrank
?
CTFxC Wedding
TWITTER AS A PROXY: YOUTUBERS --
@COREYVIDAL (ACC # VS DATE)
CTFxC Wedding
I’m Vlogging Here Indiegogo
& Filming
?
PRACTICAL CHALLENGES
• Data access, platform volatility
• Research ethics
– textual research or ‘human subjects’ research?...
PRACTICAL CHALLENGES
• Better integration with existing social and cultural theory
& empirical work
– Mixed methods, espec...
‘BIG DATA’ AND RESEARCH SKILLS
• Researchers need interdisciplinary skill sets:
– Media & communication to understand the ...
http://mappingonlinepublics.net/
@snurb_dot_info
@jeanburgess
@dpwoodford
@tsadkowsky
@lena_sauter
@timhighfield
@cdtaviji...
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CCI Winter School Workshop on Digital Methods and Social Media Analytics

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CCI Winter School Workshop on Digital Methods and Social Media Analytics

  1. 1. Digital Methods and Social Media Analytics Jean Burgess, Axel Bruns, and Darryl Woodford Media Ecologies Project, CCI Queensland University of Technology @jeanburgess | @snurb_dot_info | @dpwoodford http://mappingonlinepublics.net/
  2. 2. DIGITAL METHODS…? • Datagathering • Processing • Analysis • Re-presentation • Materiality and ‘nature’ of the digital
  3. 3. ‘BIG DATA’ & DIGITAL METHODS • Big Data as currency across the sciences and social sciences • Business intelligence & ‘data markets’ (including social media & online behavioral data). • Computational social science – e.g. MSR NYC; epidemiology; election & stock market prediction • ‘Computational turn’ in new humanities research: shift from computational tools to a new computational paradigm, changing the ontologies and epistemologies of humanities research (Berry, 2012). • Eg shift from ‘close’ to ‘distant’ reading (Moretti); ‘software studies’ (eg Fuller, 2008) and ANT approaches to new media platforms; • From ‘virtual’/trad social research methods to ‘natively’ digital methods to diagnose patterns of social change (Rogers, 2009).
  4. 4. The map is not the territory (Korzybski) …and certainly not the destination
  5. 5. UNDERSTANDING TWITTER PUBLICS • #hashtags: – Useful coordinating mechanism for core discussion – Relatively easy to capture and analyse – Fails to capture non-hashtagged tweets about the topic – Good case studies, but very little comparative work to date • National / global Twittersphere maps: – Crucial contextual baseline for #hashtag case studies – Slow and laborious data gathering process, never complete – Very long-term perspective, beyond most funded projects – Indispensable for study of Twitter as a public space
  6. 6. #ROYALWEDDING (29 APR. 2011)
  7. 7. #AUSVOTES (JULY-AUG. 2010): THEMES
  8. 8. #EQNZ: MOST VISIBLE ACCOUNTS, 22 FEB.-7 MAR. 2011 (RETWEETS + @REPLIES RECEIVED)
  9. 9. #EQNZ: VISIBILITY ACROSS EARTHQUAKES (2010-2011) (Bruns & Burgess, 2012)
  10. 10. HASHTAGMETRICS (Bruns & Stieglitz, 2012)
  11. 11. BEYOND HASHTAGS  Overlapping publics / networks – What determines their formation and dissolution? – How do they interact and interweave? – How are they interleaved with the wider media ecology? – How do they represent the Twitter component of wider societal publics? • ad hoc publics, often rapidly forming and dissolving macro: #hashtags • personal publics, accumulating slowly and relatively stable meso: follower networks • interpersonal communication, ephemeral micro: @replies (Bruns & Moe, 2013)
  12. 12. THE AUSTRALIAN TWITTERSPHERE? Follower/followee network: ~120,000 Australian Twitter users (of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012) colour = outdegree, size = indegree
  13. 13. THEMATIC CLUSTERS Perth Marketing / PR Design Web Creative Farming Agriculture Hardline Conservatives Conservatives Journalists ALP Progressives Greens News Opinion News NGOs Social Policy IT Tech Social Media Tech PR Advertising Real Estate Property Jobs HR Business Business Property Parenting Mums Craft Arts Food Wine Beer Adelaide Social ICTs Creative Design Fashion Beauty Utilities Services Net Culture Books Literature Publishing Film Theatre Arts Radio TV Music Dance Hip Hop Triple J Talkback Breakfast TV CelebritiesCycling Union NRL Football Cricket AFL Swimming V8s Evangelicals Teaching e-Learning Schools Christians Hillsong Teens Jonas Bros. Beliebers @KRuddMP @JuliaGillard
  14. 14. #AUSPOL Follower/followee network: ~120,000 Australian Twitter users (of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012) colour = #auspol tweets, size = indegree
  15. 15. #AUSVOTES Follower/followee network: ~120,000 Australian Twitter users (of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012) colour = #ausvotes tweets, size = indegree
  16. 16. #ROYALWEDDING Follower/followee network: ~120,000 Australian Twitter users (of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012) colour = #royalwedding tweets, size = indeg.
  17. 17. #MASTERCHEF Follower/followee network: ~120,000 Australian Twitter users (of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012) colour = #masterchef tweets, size = indeg.
  18. 18. THEAUSTRALIAN.COM.AU URLS Follower/followee network: ~120,000 Australian Twitter users (of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012) colour = tweets with URLs, size = indegree
  19. 19. ABC.NET.AU URLS Follower/followee network: ~120,000 Australian Twitter users (of ~950,000 known accounts by early 2012) colour = tweets with URLs, size = indegree
  20. 20. AUSTRALIAN TWITTER NEWS INDEX http://mappingonlinepublics.net/tag/atnix/
  21. 21. AUSTRALIAN TWITTER NEWS INDEX
  22. 22. BIG BIG DATA: THE FIRST MILLION TWITTER IDS Twitter IDs 1-1,000,000 (48,000 accounts still in existence) (see http://mappingonlinepublics.net/2013/04/08/the-first-million-ids-on-twitter/)
  23. 23. THE FIRST MILLION: TWEETS SENT
  24. 24. THE FIRST MILLION: TIME ZONES
  25. 25. A NEW MILLION • 1 million new account IDs (~ 422.000 existing accounts) • Newly registered on 18/19 Mar. 2013, 16:00-01:00 UTC ( 1-1.5m new users/day)
  26. 26. TWITTER AS A PROXY • Tweets, and Twitter Users, are actually informative about other platforms. • While not an alternative to application specific APIs, it can provide an approximation. • Overall pattern / content of uploaded Vine videos (that are shared via Twitter: ~50%). • Mirrors YouTubers fairly well (similar start date, ‘Pro’ YouTubers use Twitter/FB to reduce reliance on YT)
  27. 27. TWITTER AS A PROXY • While not an alternative to application specific APIs, it can provide an approximation of growth rates and user profiles. • Overall pattern / content of uploaded Vine videos (that are shared via Twitter: ~50%). • Mirrors YouTubers fairly well (similar start date, ‘Pro’ YouTubers use Twitter/FB to reduce reliance on YT)
  28. 28. TWITTER AS A PROXY: MONTH OF VINES
  29. 29. TWITTER AS A PROXY: DAILY PATTERNS
  30. 30. TWITTER AS A PROXY: HASHTAGS AS DESCRIPTORS
  31. 31. TWITTER AS A PROXY: YOUTUBERS: @CHARLESTRIPPY (ID VS. ACCESSION #) This set of IDs were apparently never allocated. Prank vs Prank
  32. 32. TWITTER AS A PROXY: YOUTUBERS -- @CHARLESTRIPPY (ACC # VS DATE) PrankvsPrank ? CTFxC Wedding
  33. 33. TWITTER AS A PROXY: YOUTUBERS -- @COREYVIDAL (ACC # VS DATE) CTFxC Wedding I’m Vlogging Here Indiegogo & Filming ?
  34. 34. PRACTICAL CHALLENGES • Data access, platform volatility • Research ethics – textual research or ‘human subjects’ research? – Consequences of public/personal convergence, data markets/open data movement, and ‘context collapse’ (boyd) – Cross-national and cross-disciplinary differences, need for public discussion
  35. 35. PRACTICAL CHALLENGES • Better integration with existing social and cultural theory & empirical work – Mixed methods, especially integration of qualitative and ethnographic approaches • Propagation and regularisation of methods (and consequences for research training) – ‘Code literacy’ sufficient to engage with the material consequences of software platforms
  36. 36. ‘BIG DATA’ AND RESEARCH SKILLS • Researchers need interdisciplinary skill sets: – Media & communication to understand the media environment – Maths and statistics to deal with ‘big data’ – Computer science to develop tools to process social media data – Communication design to develop effective visualisations – Writing and communication skills to communicate the results – … – Where do we find them? (few people have such a diverse range of skills) – How do we support their work? (we’re only just developing our methods and tools) – What is our strategy for dealing with precarity? (sudden API changes, changing fortunes of platforms, …)
  37. 37. http://mappingonlinepublics.net/ @snurb_dot_info @jeanburgess @dpwoodford @tsadkowsky @lena_sauter @timhighfield @cdtavijit @socialmediaQUT

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