More Tweets, More Votes: Social Media as a Quantitative Indicator of Political Behavior

Is social media a valid indicator of political behavior? We answer this question using a random sample of 537,231,508 tweets from August 1 to November 1, 2010 and data from 406 competitive U.S. congressional elections provided by the Federal Election Commission. … With over 500 million active users in 2012, Twitter now represents a new frontier for the study of human behavior. This research provides a framework for incorporating this emerging medium into the computational social science toolkit. [cont.]

DiGrazia, McKelvey, Bollen & Rojas, Indiana U.