twitter pulse

here an analysis of twitter tweets over the past year or so using some sort of algorithm + “sentiment analysis” . it is based on local political stuff, so may not make sense to those in the USA – and also i have to annonce the rider that, not being privy to what has been used to make the algorithm, and furthermore, being extremely skeptical of anything called “sentiment analysis” that is automatically compiled, i cannot say that some of the readouts will be of any actual authenticity or believability… however, my interest lies in the use of info-graphics for rendering lots of data. as the site says, “see more. read less”.

Creatures of Information

PenelopeTrunk

Penelope Trunk - blog domo at Brazen Careerist

We walk the corridors, searching the shelves and rearranging them, looking for lines of meaning amid leagues of cacophony and incoherence, reading the history of the past and of the future, collecting our thoughts and collecting the thoughts of others, and every so often glimpsing mirrors, in which we may recognize creatures of the information. Jorge Luis Borges The Library of Babel

I.

[ResponseIS Tweeting Better Than Blogging?] I’ve had to think about the social ‘net as a marketing opportunity for my job. I approached this by going out and sifting through the resources about current best practices. Because I’ve long be a skimmer of the marketing world as it is situated by the internet, I have also long known the most basic, challenge is making it possible for your customers to both: find your content, and, spend a quality moment with ‘it.’

That said customer might proceed to a trial–marketing lingo for doing something that you the provider knows he or she is doing–is almost the frosting on the cake of nailing down steps one and two.

Find and capture (attention.)

When I peruse the google analytics for ND2.0 or any of my own productions, I am impressed and dismayed in equal parts by their suggestive qualification of user behavior. They found us, and they spent an average of 2:02 minutes with us. (The realization of a trial here would be a comment.)

Awash in information, yet, somewhere in this ocean is content which may be found if time is invested. Stepping back from this opaque generality, is a slightly more refined generality: an individual invests time in a manner distinctive to him or her, is motivated by an overt or tacit goal, and, his or her’s success requires a successful act of retrieval and selection.

To give this description a finer grain, we would need to know something more detailed about the conjunction of: goals, time, tool, manner/regimen, medium, media, (and more.)

In this there would arise the positive question. For example, what characterizes the user most likely to read content of some specific length? There could be all sorts of ways to break down the previously mentioned descriptive elements.

Of course I am in possession of my own subject, myself. (Netdynamics was partly rooted in reflexive accounts.) I have a good idea about that which comprises the array of my own goals, what kinds of content focus both my time and attention, and, I also have a fairly rich terminology for establishing the baseline description concerned with characterizing what kind/type/disposition I possess.

If I integrate a rough and approximate sense of goal directed search-and-retrieval with this kind of baseline description, and, I then scale this conceptually to include all persons who could be differentiated in this way, I can then blast this downward to questions about Twitter and blogosphere. I reckon the devil would be in the details betwixt, for example, two extremes. One extreme is the person who meets their goals by exclusively spending not more than two minutes with any section of content, and, another person who only uses the internet to retrieve long-form content.

Following through with this sketch it seems we land in the interdisciplinary flux of psychology, anthropology, sociology, and, information science.

From this, there could be a folksy supposition: there are those users who are tend to express attention deficit disorder. This user’s time is easily waylaid. What would a causal hypothesis be once we establish that some users operate like this?

II.

ND2.0’s two-to-four hundred visits per month are somewhere on the continuum of quantifiable responsive agency and activity. Our blog is more active than all the dead and lesser blogs. We haven’t invested the time to elevate its activity, yet the default is not completely shabby at all. Yet, we’re not aiming to address the complex problem of how to make our content retrievable, vital, and, incidentally, formulate its distribution in ways which match the various ways users deploy to meet their goals.

III.

In three different feedreaders I have subscribed to a total of over 2,000 blogs. I keyword search through the blogs using the RSS client. Another way to look at this is that I have created a subset of blogs and severely limited the base data set. This would be contrasted with searching via Google. In the case of using Google, I am looking through a humongous data set, but, I also have to invest the time in wading through the false positives. My experience is that there’s lots of gold deep in the pages of a Google search, yet the time investment is often too much.

I don’t know what the actual figures are, however, for argument’s sake, say I spend 25% of my time ‘after retrieval,’ on average, using up 5 minutes per retrieved item. This is a somewhat complicated vector, right? This includes the twenty to sixty minutes–or so–I might spend reading a journal article or long magazine article. The other side of this measure is that I spend 25% of my time using time at the rate of less than five minutes per retrieved item. Leaving the 50% I require to search and retrieve.

(No matter what the actual distribution of time is, it shifts were I to drop out, so-to-speak, “off screen,” dealing with content I print out, or listen to.)

IV.

One last observation; when I look at my Twitter stream (twitter.com/kamelmauz and twitter.com/sq1learning) or at blogs, I’m impressed by the implicit time investment of other users. And, I can make distinctions, such as the difference between Twitter users who are mostly scattering links, and, Twitter users who mostly are interacting with each other. Likewise, on blogs, I’m fascinated by comment threads. Not for their content, but because of their group relations and social-psychological context.

I’m very impressed by the blog Crooked Timber, where something like three dozen people are expressing (day in and day out,) deeply thought responses to sophisticated thinking.

There are many extremely successful blogs produced by a single person. Take for example Brazen Careeristfrom Penelope Trunk. It gets hundreds of thousands of hits per month.

A blog requires users who possess the right combination of traits, motivation, goals–as long as the blog is oriented to users. Obviously, there is the other side of the equation: those who develop and produce and distribute content for users.

As for Twitter, comments will follow. I will say this: it’s not well matched with my disposition. I prefer to manage serendipity rather than simply be subjected to it!

tweeting better than blogging?

as suspected, by me – because even though i’m not young i am guilty – people are not blogging so much no more but instead hanging out in the twitter zone or facebook.
well, i’m not guilty of facebook, too much dross and very lowest common denominator, but i am a twitter hound nowadays. but mostly in order to get pointers to other online articles and news stories etc, not so much to update people on my own inane daily thoughts.

i will continue to do that on a blog, since i do like making longish essays.
well, id rather people read them, but even so i’d do it anyway. the only difference being, that online i’m more likely to watch my tongue than in a personal log or ‘diary’.

check out the NYT article on same, based on pew surveys and so on…
like here’s a quote —

The Internet and American Life Project at the Pew Research Center found that from 2006 to 2009, blogging among children ages 12 to 17 fell by half; now 14 percent of children those ages who use the Internet have blogs. Among 18-to-33-year-olds, the project said in a report last year, blogging dropped two percentage points in 2010 from two years earlier.

Former bloggers said they were too busy to write lengthy posts and were uninspired by a lack of readers. Others said they had no interest in creating a blog because social networking did a good enough job keeping them in touch with friends and family.

‘Caused’ / Enabling

(src) click for zoom in

I get the ’caused’ as opposed to caused, but my tentative reflection is that a distinction without a difference is implied in your remark, Apurr.

We know that social networks don’t cause anything. This would be the cybernetic view against presumptions that an instrumentality is ever wholly/directly/primarily causal. The various instrumentalities are networks for information conveyance in a “minded” system, so the network enables information to flow between instances of human consciousness. In turn a piece of information is propagated via other channels simultaneously, and, propagated as a consequence of, for example, Twitter. It could be said, a piece of information is off-loaded from the network conveyor and set on the, for example, mouth-to-ear conveyor.

In the larger minded system there are various conveyances. Web sites (including forums, al-Jazeera, blogs, newspapers, telephones, cell phones, one-to-one verbal, meetings, etc.. These sum to constitute an ecology. As Phillip Howard puts it:

Digital media didn’t oust Mubarak, but it did provide the medium by which soulful calls for freedom have cascaded across North Africa and the Middle East.

So: Digital media didn’t oust Mubarak, but it did provide a medium by which soulful calls for freedom have cascaded across North Africa and the Middle East.

I.
Influence and effects and consequences and other social results can be measured and assessed. I remember several years ago discussing with a social network expert and graphic specialist what a social network diagram does and does not show. I suggested to him that the qualities of the relationships and their relational effects are not aspects of the network diagram we were talking about. Depictions of network relationships represent implicit schemata. These pictures include and exclude functional aspects, and often also represent slices rather than dynamics.

With respect to a system and the system of systems–and granting Batesonian mindedness–I suspect the question of causality can be addressed only at the point a lot more dimensionality is built into the analysis.

II.

“There’s 80 million people in Egypt, and almost 40 percent are below the poverty line,” Sharma said. “Cell phone penetration is incredibly high, but the majority of the cell phones are not smartphones. A lot of the information that was getting out was from a very small critical mass of people that were able to tweet out of Egypt. Friends of mine in Cairo estimate that it’s less than 200 people who were tweeting from Cairo.”

“The reach of new media is spreading: as of December, 2009, there were over 2,300,000 Facebook users in Egypt. That’s 184 percent growth over the previous twelve months. While Twitter has yet to become the rage in Egypt that it is elsewhere, it has become a popular means for Egyptian activists to alert their friends and followers of arrests and intimidation by security forces.”
(Egypt, Twitter, and the rise of the watchdog crowd By Caroline McCarthy, CNET News on February 14, 2011)

According to a study released by the government-run Information and Decision Support Center in May 2008, blogging provides Egyptian youth “with a refuge where they [can] easily express themselves and their beliefs without restrictions.” The study also asserts that “from 2006 to 2008, a number of demonstrations and expressions of real political protest were associated in one way or another with cyber-protests on the Internet, tapping into the massive public mobilization of youth on political blogs.”

The study estimated that as of 2008 there were approximately 160,000 Egyptian blogs, which accounts for approximately one in four internet subscriptions in the country. The content of the blogs was broken down as follows: 30.7 percent covered a variety of topics, 18.9 percent were political, 15.5 percent personal, 14.4 percent business and culture, 7 percent religious, 4.8 percent social, and 4 percent focused on science and modern technology. Social networking, political action and its real impact in Egypt Sallie Pisch Bikyamasr blog March 21, 2010!

The U.K. government complained to Egypt after Vodafone Group Plc was ordered to send text messages seen to instigate violence as demonstrators demanded the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak.

U.K. Foreign Office Minister Alistair Burt contacted the Egyptian ambassador in London to discuss the order to Vodafone after the company reached out to the government, the Foreign Office said last night. British Foreign Secretary William Hague yesterday issued a statement calling the “abuse” of Internet and mobile-phone networks “unacceptable and disturbing.”

Egyptian authorities instructed the local mobile-network operators, which also include Etisalat and France Telecom SA’s Mobinil service, to send messages under emergency powers provisions. Vodafone, the world’s biggest mobile-phone operator, said yesterday that the messages were not written by the mobile- phone operators. (U.K. Complains to Egypt on Ordered Vodafone Messages By Jonathan Browning and Thomas Penny – Feb 4, 2011 Bloomberg)

Also:

On the Ground at Social Media Week: The Internet & Uprisings in the Arab World: Are We Already In A Post-Social Media World? By Faye Anderson on February 9, 2011

Egyptian Crisis: The Revolution Will Not Be Tweeted By Mark Evans – January 31st, 2011 Sysomos blog

III.
I wonder if the critical mass–with respect to social media–for effective social instigation may be a matter of a confluence of early adapters along the spectrum of internet media in a context where there aren’t a lot of internet users overall. In Egypt’s case, there is huge mobile (but not smart) phone penetration. Also, there apparently are longstanding face-to-face ‘network’ regimes too.

joining the [environmental] tweeps

i’ve been subbed to twitter since susan set up an account. then i added another following for my friend in finland. that was it really, for a while. i never went there, thought it was a silly way to communicate, and much preferred the potential for longer more considered discussions provided by email lists.

but one of my old friends just recently told me he was on twitter and had been contributing quite a bit and asked what my twitter account was. after i told him, i added him to my following list, and thereafter began to read his tweets. just browsingly, went and looked at some others, including ABC’s program feed for Q&A – which i’d noted while watching the program in which people would tweet their questions or comments on the show as it went to air, with the feed run at the bottom of the screen. so i began to follow abcqanda… and it began to retweet some items i thought were from followable sources…. and so it began.

i also checked in to the ND twitter feed, and noted that we follow so many tweeps that the list is right off the page. some of them i thought might be interesting to me, so checked their feeds too. one or two i added to my own feed, and one or two of my own, i added to ND.

it seems i am not alone in this newfound flocking to twitter. here is the opening of an article on ABC Environment (drawn there via my twitter feed, where else), entitled “social media is going to save the world” (i suspect a sliver of ‘irony’ intended):

The writing is on the screen. Causes, products and brands that will shape and build the new sustainable economy will thrive in the new social media environment.

ABOUT A MONTH ago I started to tweet. Hello social media, goodbye sleep. Sure I stumble around LinkedIn, and most of my family does the Facebook thing, but Twitter is a social network made for an info-junkie.

Now, books are Himalayas, even paragraphs are long compared to a tweet, yet it’s amazing how much quality information can be packed into a sliver of opinion or news and a web-link. A full day’s tweet inbox is a virtual archipelago of leads, ideas, insights, wit, sarcasm, bias, counter-views, revelations and hard data. Across all social media sites it’s now estimated there are 1.5 billion-plus visits a day globally. In Australia, the trend is propelling numbers, time spent and sheer volume of data traffic on the Internet, making the case for the NBN stronger by the day.

the whole thing can be read here too.

the fact that this article is on the ABC Environment page should not be lost on you.. the writer makes the point that many of the tweeps using micro-blogging are doing so to exercise their eco-inclined sensitivities. as he puts it, “[my] grand claim that social media is a game-changer for sustainability”.
and of course why is it that i have been drawn in also, apart from having more time on my hands? most of the tweeting and following i do seems to be related to environmental concerns. this is not surprising given my extremely green views.

and here is an excerpt from the talk given by one of my heroes – david suzuki – heard on the ABC TV this morning, after being recorded in perth earlier this year. the whole recording can be seen+heard by going to the ABC site, http://www.abc.net.au/tv/bigideas/stories/2010/11/16/3066634.htm.

and while we’re watching fascinating documentaries… uh? oh, well i was with the following… check out Addicted to Plastic. it’ll be there to watch for about a month. pretty good i reckon – the bad, and then the good ways people are trying to recycle and re-use plastic. not boring for someone like me anyway.

A Slick PWN

(Pwn (below: Various pronunciations) is a leetspeak slang term derived from the verb “own”, as meaning to appropriate or to conquer to gain ownership. The term implies domination or humiliation of a rival, used primarily in the Internet-based video game culture to taunt an opponent who has just been soundly defeated (e.g., “You just got pwned!”). It was popular among Counter-Strike gamers before spreading through the more general Internet world. The past tense and past participle, pwned, may also be spelled pwnd, pwn’d, pwn3d, pwnt, poned, pawned, or powned. Source: Wikipedia )

Enterprising parodists on May 19 created a Twitter account and feed to mock BP, BPGlobalPR.

Chris Matyszczyk reports (5/26) from CNET,

CNN did contact BP and asked the company whether it might feel its image was being polluted by this rogue global PR force. BP reportedly said it had seen it, but was sure that people would realize it’s not really the company’s work.

Perhaps this underestimates people’s notions of what is and isn’t possible in today’s often ugly, cynical world.

Still, I know there will be sticklers among you who will attempt to invoke Twitter’s fake pages policy. It reads that impersonators “should not be the exact name of the subject of the parody, commentary, or fandom; to make it clearer, you should distinguish the account with a qualifier such as ‘not,’ ‘fake’ or ‘fan.'”

It’s unlikely Twitter will get too picky about this, given that it gets some nice PR (happy to help, as always, chaps) out of it all, and given that BP seems unlikely to complain. BP has made its first wise PR move in allowing this site to gush black humor while the nation’s beaches are threatened by a far more painful darkness.

90,000+ followers, and counting.

Sometime in the next few days, BPGlobalPR’s following will surpass in number BP’s number of employees worldwide.

BP America’s Twitter following? 8,000 or so.

Although the official feed doesn’t offer any black humor, it’s funny in a different way.

What the Trend?

What the Trend?

Find out what’s trending on Twitter and why. For each trend, we give you a quick explanation of WHY it’s trending (these blurbs are edited by you!) You can also see the latest tweets, Flickr photos and news stories.

example: Why is #nmatl popular right now?

First trend: about 2 hours ago | Last trend: about a minute ago | Last defined: about 2 hours ago | Link: http://wttrend.com/7872

NMATL stands for the New Media Atlanta Conference: Social Media for Business, Sept 25, 2009. http://newmediaatlanta.com/

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