Social media wars: Measuring the battle lines

As previously posted I was at the UKOLN Metrics and Social Web Services: Quantitative Evidence for their Use and Impact event on Monday. Before attending this event I thought I had a reasonably understanding of social media metrics but I left realising there was a lot I didn’t know, but with new ideas to help rebuild my understanding (and things I might be able to make to help others).

One of the reasons I was keen to squeeze this event in as one of my last RSC engagements was I knew there were going to be people I wanted to finally meet after being a long time follower and others who I wanted to meet again. 

During the event I fired up my Google Spreadsheet Tweet archiver and was collecting #ukolneim tweets (I saw 107962914038670635598 aka Alan Cann dipping in to Google+ and he made an interesting observation about G+’s inability to aggregate posts around a tag – I would link to it but Google Plus also doesn’t appear to have a search facility yet – oops).

One of the reasons for capturing the tweets was to use my ported version of Tony Hirst’s Friendviz to help see the hashtag community. When I generated this I noticed that some well connected tweeters were orphaned or lacking in connections (eg look at lonely old Martin Weller top right):


Fortunately Tony was on hand to quiz and he quickly saw that the Google Social Graph results included a number of rather than which are parsed to make the node connections. So is the Social Graph API another example of a Google service missing out on data Twitter, just as Google recently lost real time search with the twitstream? Are we going to see more examples of the big social media players put up defences in preparation to a social media war?

Who knows, but spotting an opportunity to get the monopoly on protovis/friendviz hashtag community diagrams I flexed by Google Spreadsheet/Twitter API muscles and turned the redirect_by_id’s back into Twitter usernames. Now Martin Weller is looking less lonely:


Or if you aren’t an Internet Explorer user here’s the interactive version (the embed code is here):

Here’s a copy of the new code which handles the requests to the Twitter API for username lookups. 


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