DiscoverText: A Vital Research Tool for Social Media

Longtime DiscoverText User Jacob Groshek

I’ve been using DiscoverText for several years, primarily in an academic research capacity but also working with journalists to help them reach broader audiences through social media.  From an academic standpoint, DiscoverText was the backbone of collecting Facebook and Twitter data for a study on the 2012 Presidential election that was published in Social Scientific Computer Review.  When working with the New England Center for Investigative Reporting, we use DiscoverText to collect social data and mine that to find users interested in topics being covered by the center and to share stories with them.  Raw data can be exported for use in third party software, as in the case of this work on co-mentions about flooding.

Altogether, DT is a vital tool to not only collect and gather data but also to code and analyze data.  It is simply the best place to begin with social data, and offers utilities many other entities do not, including the ability to clean data and minimize redundancies such as those created by bots.  DiscoverText and Texifter personnel have my highest endorsement. It is a model enterprise for users at all levels who are looking to engage in a rich and thorough analysis of social media data.

About Jacob Groshek

Dr. Groshek’s research focuses on the democratic utility of communication technologies and the ways in which the structure, content and uses of online and mobile media may influence political change. Additional research pursuits include applied econometric analyses, data mining social media content, public sentiment, and media ethics. He has over 20 peer-reviewed publications since earning his Ph.D. at Indiana University in 2008 and some of his recent work is featured in Journal of Communication, New Media & Society, Social Scientific Computer Review, and in volumes published by Oxford and Routledge, among others. Dr. Groshek also sits on the editorial board of Communication Yearbook and regularly reviews for more than a dozen journals. He just completed his term as Head of the Communication Technology division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC) and he recently received a top faculty paper award at the annual AEJMC conference.
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