Towards More Systematic Twitter Analysis: Metrics for Tweeting Activities

Bruns Axel, Stieglitz Stefan


Abstract
Twitter is an important and influential social media platform, but much research into its uses remains centred around isolated cases – e.g. of events in political communication, crisis communication, or popular culture, often coordinated by shared hashtags (brief keywords, prefixed with the symbol ‘#’). In particular, a lack of standard metrics for comparing communicative patterns across cases prevents researchers from developing a more comprehensive perspective on the diverse, sometimes crucial roles which hashtags play in Twitter-based communication. We address this problem by outlining a catalogue of widely applicable, standardised metrics for analysing Twitter-based communication, with particular focus on hashtagged exchanges. We also point to potential uses for such metrics, presenting an indication of what broader comparisons of diverse cases can achieve.

Keywords
Twitter, social media, hashtags, metrics, communicative exchanges



Publication type
Article in Journal

Peer reviewed
Yes

Publication status
Published

Year
2013

Journal
International Journal of Social Research Methodology

Volume
16

Issue
2

Pages range
91-108

Language
English

DOI