Thursday, 26 May 2011

Using Web 3.0 to analyse possible EU wide revolt

All year the Web 3.0 lab has been using web analytics to try and track the use of social media to organize revolts. In Spain the intensity of protests shows up obviously. The site of the Madrid protests is not only a site of high tweeting (95/100) but using the high density analysis, which can see condensed crowds tweeting in the real world, we are seeing very concentrated tweeting in Madrid going lasting almost two weeks now.


In keeping with the recent protests in the Arab world we are seeing extremely high tweeting coming from the site of an evolving protest in Madrid.


A number of left wing activists have predicted that this would spread to other major cities in Europe. See also. That is possible, but right now we are not seeing it using Web analysis of twitter density. But we will continue to monitor the events. We are reading more reports of a Greek event coming soon.

In Athens we are seeing very low levels of tweeting coming from the area around the Parliament, which would indicate that a large peaceful group using social media is not collecting there at this point.

Update June 4th 2011 We are finally beginning to see elevated tweeting form a protest camp in Athens. From what we have heard in Madrid and read on Twitter we suspect a Jasmine peace camp like in Spain has spread to Greece.



Even in Paris where the National Assembly has a high level of tweeting, using the high density tweeting does not show a major concentration of protesters. Again it is critical to compare low to high density readings. If a low and high density reading are close to the same value, that means a very concentrated area of tweeting. If the low density default value is high but the high density is far smaller (like less than a quarter), you are actually seeing a empty part of a busy urban area. So a high score alone does not mean much.



We will continue to look, but it looks to us as if Jasmine has only spread to Spain, where it has clearly taken hold.

This is a very fast moving event and sometimes twitter lags behind the trend. In US protests this winter over union rights in Wisconsin twitter din't really take off until the on-site protest was already well established. Events on the ground are still the ultimate stage for political organization, and twitter will likely only show explosive growth, as is the case in Spain, when a major protest movement in already established.


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