What Your Tweets Say About You – The New Yorker

Analyzing what is posted online to detect positive and negative emotions, and even heart attack trends

This article shows that you can learn a lot from what is posted online. It is like in real life when you talk to someone, if you know her/him well you can say pretty quickly what’s wrong or whether she/he’s feeling good about her-/himself or her/his level of stress.

What is more interesting is that it has been used in a  recent study to detect trends about heart attacks in the U.S. However, we need to be cautious as people active in social media are not the same as people dying from the disease. Researchers explained that even if people are not the same, the activity in social media can be influenced by the context, the local community, the neighborhood, and reflect a reality in a specific area. The question of causality remains and we are all aware of spurious correlations between 2 trends that have nothing in common.

It will be fascinating to see if more studies based on social media analysis will emerge and what will be the conclusions.

The New Yorker article

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