London, SepT 8: The “happy” or “sad” tweets may not accurately reflect a Twitter user’s actual emotiol state offline, suggests new research.
Rather, Twitter users have developed their own unique cultural behaviour, conversations and identities, which shape the ways in which they present their views online, said the study published in the jourl PLOS ONE.
There is no evidence that social media content shared on Twitter is a truthful reflection of how its users feel, said study author Eric Jensen, Associate Professor at University of Warwick in Britain. With increasing use of social media, there has been growing interest in tapping this existing source of easily accessible “big data” to develop social science knowledge.
With over 300 million monthly active users around the globe sharing their thoughts in 140 characters or less, studies based on Twitter data are “particularly alluring” to researchers and the media.
The new findings highlight the problems of drawing broader conclusions from a sample of Twitter users.
Twitter is an unreliable witness to the world’s emotions, Jensen said.
“Twitter users present only one side of themselves on social media, shielding their true feelings for good reasons, such as professiol reputation,” Jensen added. (IANS)