Twitter makes its data available in real-time and at no cost, making it a popular data source for many academic researchers. Wasim Ahmed discusses some of the implications of the decision to expand the character limit from 140 to 280. Greater space makes for greater depth and detail, addressing the difficulties of interpretation that 140-character tweets would sometimes present. […]
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More room for greater depth and detail: implications for academic research of Twitter’s expanded character limit
As 2017 nears its end and before our focus is drawn to whatever the new year might have in store, now is the perfect time to look back and reflect on the last twelve months on the Impact Blog. Editor Kieran Booluck reports on another year in which our readership has grown, and also shares a selection of the […]
Twitter can help with scientific dissemination but its influence on citation impact is less clear
Researchers have long been encouraged to use Twitter. But does researchers’ presence on Twitter influence citations to their papers? José Luis Ortega explored to what extent the participation of scholars on Twitter can influence the tweeting of their articles and found that although the relationship between tweets […]
Following his initial post on this topic in 2015, Wasim Ahmed has updated and expanded his rundown of the tools available to social scientists looking to analyse social media data. A number of new applications have been released in the intervening period, with the increasing complexity of certain research questions also having prompted some tools to increase their data […]
Social media offers great opportunities for teaching. Wasim Ahmed and Sergej Lugovic have reviewed the literature on the use of Twitter in the classroom and have noted its benefits to both students and teachers. Not only can it increase participation and engagement, particularly among more introverted students, but it can also be used to bring new, popular resources into […]
Stephen Thompson, Head of Digital at the University of Sheffield looks at why organisations are adapting their processes to incorporate social media for crisis communications. Wasim Ahmed, PhD candidate, provides a practical overview of the social media tools that can be used to monitor and track crisis communication issues that may arise.
Crisis communication issues can take many forms. Organisational issues such as […]
Online activism is a frequently debated topic amongst journalists and researchers alike. What effect can a popular Twitter hashtag really have in achieving political or social change? Wasim Ahmed looks in depth at last year’s heavily tweeted #ThisIsACoup hashtag. While concrete outcomes may still be indeterminate, it is clear social media is now a rich space for activism, expressions of solidarity […]
An antidote to futility: Why academics (and students) should take blogging / social media seriously
Blogs are now an established part of the chattersphere/public conversation, especially in international development circles, but Duncan Green finds academic take-up lacking. Here he outlines the major arguments for taking blogging and social media seriously. It doesn’t need to become another onerous time-commitment. Reading a […]
It has become a tradition on the Impact Blog to look back at the end of the year and share a round-up of our top posts. Managing Editor Sierra Williams delves into the Google Analytics and provides a list of the most viewed pieces along with a wider look at our top tweets and our most captivating posts (minutes per page) on the […]
There are specific challenges to using social media data in academic research, and in particular Twitter data, including ethical, legal and methodological issues. Wasim Ahmed builds on his previous work on acquiring Twitter data and offers a list of some of the challenges researchers may face. He also provides plenty of links to resources for social scientists looking to explore […]
The popularity of social media sites and the ease at which its data is available means these platforms are increasingly becoming primary sources for social research. Wasim Ahmed presents a quick look at some of the tools available to social scientists for analysing social media data and also reflects on the limitations of the platforms and the methods used for this […]
A series of meetups have been arranged for those interested in the use and applications of social data. Farida Vis provides a brief overview of the latest event on business uses of social data. Speakers reflected on principles for handling data, the need to collaborate externally, and how to look more closely at the full lifecycle of social data. Sometimes social […]