Tweets from people, businesses & brands don’t match up

Researchers say they know when users are going to Tweet – and what type of a Twitter user is behind the accounts.

A team at the Imperial College in London analyzed the Twitter activities of three different types of users: real people, managed accounts (by businesses and organizations) and Twitter bots.

Looking at more than 160,000 tweets, the researchers looked for patterns.

From the time of the day that tweets were sent to the frequency between tweets, they broke down the numbers.

After sorting through the stats, the researchers say they can accurately predict when the analyzed accounts will tweet, and how often they’ll send one of those 140-character digital dispatches.

What’s more is that they figured out that most people (real humans) will be active on Twitter in the afternoons and evenings.

The personal accounts tweet from 7 a.m. to midnight throughout the week, at evenly predictable times.

Managed accounts – whether they’re corporate brands or public figures – are more likely to tweet during business hours, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Friday.

That creates a small problem, however.

The accounts run by companies are active on Twitter only half the time real people are active. So businesses dumping money into social media marketing are active, they’re just reaching half the audience they could grasp due to operating during business hours.

Looking at the characteristics for each type of user, the study found bots tweet at random times throughout the week.

Are your Twitter followers active on Twitter when you’re active? Do you think there is a mis-match that brands and businesses need to address?

Tweets to be displayed on giant billboards, in malls

sample_tweet_billboardExpect to see 140-character messages on big billboards as you drive around major Canadian cities this summer.

Pattison Onestop and Spacing Magazine are launching a project this summer that will see Tweets about our cities displayed on billboards and in malls.

The cross-Canada art project is aimed at sparking discussions about the issues facing the cities we live in.

 So maybe you’ll see a Tweet questioning the need for a wall of condos in Toronto, beside the Gardiner Expressway.

Or you could see a Tweet about the Alberta oilsands, as you shop for shoes inside a mall in Calgary.

To get your message posted, send a Tweet about a Canadian city to @DearCityCanada by June 15. Just start the Tweet off by saying “Dear Vancouver….” (or address it to any other Canadian city.)

The tweets will be shown every five minutes on display screens inside malls in 33 cities across the country, from June 3-June 15.

Then in July and August, the messages sent to @DearCityCanada will go big – displayed on the big giant billboards operated by Pattison in 19 cities.

In a statement, Spacing Magazine Editor Shawn Micallef says the magazine is excited to get this “art” into public spaces.

Whether you see this as art or not, Micallef also points out that this will be a way for Canadians to show love – or “even some tough love” for our cities.

The further you travel, the happier your tweets?

twitter_logoSick of seeing your friends’ happy, optimistic tweets when they’re away from home? Or can’t stand that co-worker who gleefully gloats about their vacation on Twitter?

You can’t blame them, a new study suggests.

According to researchers at the University of Vermont, people’s tweets are happier the further away they are from home.

The group analyzed roughly four billion tweets, sent from the year 2011 to now.

They compared tweets sent from a user’s geographical home location to messages sent out of town.

Using the exact latitude and longitude of tweets (to within 10 metres), researchers classified tweets based on whether they were sent near where a user lived, or from somewhere different.

You might be wondering – how did they know where a user lived? Well, it was simply a matter of knowing where most tweets were sent from, over and over, on a consistent basis.

Figuring out a tweet’s happiness was a little more complicated. To solve that problem, they came up with hedonometer.

Taking into account the number of words in a tweet, such as “great”, “new” – helped classify a tweet as being happy.

Meanwhile, a tweet with “hate” or “bored” would symbolize a negative tweet.

What they found was that the happiness of tweets goes up the further away they are from home, especially when they’re thousands of kilometres away from home.

Tweets about 1 km from home are typically less happy.

Users on Twitter who usually have a wider variation in distances also tended to use the happier words more often those who didn’t always tweet from such a selection of different places, away from home.

That doesn’t necessarily mean that jet-setters are happier, but it just means that they’re tweeting happier thoughts.

Do you get sick of seeing really happy or sad tweets on Twitter?

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