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Twitter Mood

October 6, 2011

Sociologists analyzed Twitter posts to track daily and seasonal mood swings around the world.

Transcript

BOB HIRSHON (host):

Tweeting the world’s emotions.  I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

The social networking site Twitter has made news again, this time in the journal Science.  Cornell University sociologists Scott Golder and Michael Macy wanted to look at daily and seasonal mood patterns on a global scale.  So they analyzed millions of public, time-stamped Twitter postings, known as tweets, from English speakers all over the world.  They found that moods did follow some seemingly universal patterns.   For example, positive mood peaked in the morning and gradually declined throughout the day, even on weekends – although the weekends were happier overall.  Macy says this could mark the beginning of a new era of social science research.

MICHAEL MACY (Cornell University):

We see the opportunity here to study human behavior and especially human interaction in real time, across diverse cultures, in ways that we really could not imagine being able to do even five years ago.

HIRSHON:

I’m Bob Hirshon for AAAS, the Science Society.