Crucible Network Research Projects

Party Line Detection

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This undergraduate group design project (competition winner in 2010) provided a live visualisation of content analysis from Twitter feeds of political candidates in the 2010 UK general election. The system was live during the election at www.tweetguv.co.uk

Design brief: New online ‘social media’ products become political tools almost as soon as they are released. But not all politicians realise that online content is more dangerous than traditional party newsletters, because it can be analysed automatically. Your task is to apply the Twitter API to analyse whether UK politicians are showing independent thought when they use Twitter, or are simply following the party line. Are they addressing the same issues as others in their party, perhaps simply reusing material from press releases? Or are they adopting ideas from the opposition agenda? Your system should provide voters with a clear summary and trend analysis, perhaps using visualisations of the kind that are shown on TV on election nights.