Saturday, August 04, 2012

Why do people tweet more about the Olympics than read tweets?

Well first, and strangely enough, it is easier to create a tweet or RT than find or read tweets.

I don't know if you have noticed that those searching for tweets are usually companies or individual more interested about their own impact than actual people seeking to be informed on Twitter.  It is all about the "what are they saying about me or my brand?"

My work about making sense of information overload, collaboration systems, and social networking operates from the premiss that value can be found in seeking and discovery useful information that is often unstructured.

The recent overwhelming influx of Olympics tweets, and how they are being used, has revealed many issues beyond brand protectionisms.  One issue can be best expressed as "How do I make sense of all these Olympics tweets streaming and crashing my TweetDeck? And do I really get the gist of what is emerging by reading and sorting through them?".

I think that if people thought that tweets did not need to be found, but instead needed to be processed to deliver a more and consolidated expression of what is emerging, that people would seek discovery from tweets instead of depending on their connections' interests to reduce the noise, (an issue that I address in one of my prior blogs).

A company called Tweather LLC has incorporated Darwin's core engine into its temporal representation of Tweets.  They just released two days ago a site dedicated to the Olympics.  The result is fascinating in that they are able to show the movement of real-time trends using animation to help people see what is happening before looking at the actual tweets.

I invite you to take a look and leave me comments about it.  Remember that it is a prototype and that features will appears as they improve the site.  But for now it does the job and I use it to follow the trends of the USA team athletes.  Share it!

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