Congressional Tweets Analyzed at UMD

Here is a great piece of social media research from the University of Maryland, College of Information Studies.

Prof. Jen Golbeck and Justin Grimes analyzed 6,000 tweets from United States Congress members.  They found some interaction but a dominant broadcast pattern of use with a focus on self-promotion.  The Washington Post headlines the results as “Tweeting Their Own Horns Study Finds Posts By Lawmakers Boastful or Boring”


Here is the video:

From the UMD News desk:
“A new study by University of Maryland researchers finds a
growing use of Twitter among members of Congress, but that
the purpose and content of their messages fall short of
improving government transparency.

Jennifer Golbeck, assistant professor in the College of Information
Studies, Maryland’s iSchool, a doctoral student and an undergraduate
assistant analyzed more than 5,000 tweets sent by 69 members of
Congress in February. They found that House and Senate members
were using the social media platform mostly to promote themselves,
rather than engage in dialogue with constituents and the public at large.

“Members of Congress were not sharing much new information on
Twitter, and there were few posts that improve transparency,”
Golbeck says.”

One thought on “Congressional Tweets Analyzed at UMD

  1. As far as I can tell, tweets indicating boastfulness and boringness are not restricted to members of Congress, and I suspect that self-promotion is the single most common goal of most tweeters (and tweets). Perhaps future research will highlight the ways – if any – that Twitter use among Congressfolk is significantly different from those who vote (or don’t vote) them into office.

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