Why We Twitter: Understanding MicrobloggingUsage and Communities
Microblogging is a new form of communication in whichusers can describe their current status in short posts dis-tributed by instant messages, mobile phones, email or theWeb. Twitter, a popular microblogging tool has seen a lotof growth since it launched in October, 2006. In this paper,we present our observations of the microblogging phenom-ena by studying the topological and geographical propertiesof Twitter’s social network. We ﬁnd that people use mi-croblogging to talk about their daily activities and to seekor share information. Finally, we analyze the user intentionsassociated at a community level and show how users withsimilar intentions connect with each other.
Categories and Subject Descriptors
Information Search and Retrieval
]: InformationSearch and Retrieval - Information Filtering; J.4 [
]: Social and Behavioral Sciences - Economics
Social Network Analysis, User Intent, Microblogging, SocialMedia
Microblogging is a relatively new phenomenon deﬁned as
“a form of blogging that lets you write brief text updates (usu-ally less than 200 characters) about your life on the go and send them to friends and interested observers via text mes-saging, instant messaging (IM), email or the web.”
. It is
Permission to make digital or hard copies of all or part of this work forpersonal or classroom use is granted without fee provided that copies arenot made or distributed for proﬁt or commercial advantage and that copiesbear this notice and the full citation on the ﬁrst page. To copy otherwise, orrepublish, to post on servers or to redistribute to lists, requires prior speciﬁcpermission and/or a fee.Joint 9th WEBKDD and 1st SNA-KDD Workshop ’07 , August 12, 2007 ,San Jose, California , USA . Copyright 2007 ACM 1-59593-444-8...
provided by several services including Twitter
andmore recently Pownce
. These tools provide a light-weight,easy form of communication that enables users to broadcastand share information about their activities, opinions andstatus. One of the popular microblogging platforms is Twit-ter . According to ComScore, within eight months of itslaunch, Twitter had about 94,000 users as of April, 2007 .Figure 1 shows a snapshot of the ﬁrst author’s Twitter home-page. Updates or posts are made by succinctly describingone’s current status within a limit of 140 characters. Top-ics range from daily life to current events, news stories, andother interests. IM tools including Gtalk, Yahoo and MSNhave features that allow users to share their current statuswith friends on their buddy lists. Microblogging tools facili-tate easily sharing status messages either publicly or withina social network.
Figure 1: An example Twitter homepage with up-dates talking about daily experiences and personalinterests.