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2011 IEEE/WIC/ACM International Joint Conferences on Web Intelligence (WI) and Intelligent Agent Technologies
Twitter Informatics: Tracking and Understanding Public Reaction during the 2009 Swine Flu Pandemic
Lyon France
August 22-August 27
ISBN: 978-0-7695-4513-4
Much attention has been focused on Twitter because it serves as a central hub for the publishing, dissemination, and discovery of online media. This is true for both traditional news outlets and user generated content, both of which can vary widely in their journalistic and scientific quality. The recent Swine Flu pandemic of 2009 highlighted this aspect perfectly, global events that created a large online buzz, with some dubious medical facts leaking into public opinion. This paper presents an investigation into how online resources relating to Swine Flu were discussed on Twitter, with a focus on identifying and analyzing the popularity of trusted information sources (e.g. from quality news outlets and official health agencies). Our findings indicate that reputable sources are more popular than untrusted ones, but that information with poor scientific merit can still leak into to the network and potentially cause harm.
Index Terms:
Twitter, Swine Flu, H1N1, Data Mining, News, Social Media, eHealth, Web Science
Citation:
Martin Szomszor, Patty Kostkova, Connie St Louis, "Twitter Informatics: Tracking and Understanding Public Reaction during the 2009 Swine Flu Pandemic," wi-iat, vol. 1, pp.320-323, 2011 IEEE/WIC/ACM International Joint Conferences on Web Intelligence (WI) and Intelligent Agent Technologies, 2011
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