Megan Anderson replied to the topic SAS Social Media analytics – valuable tool for passive data collection, biased sampling, or both? in the forum Forum Discussions 9 years, 12 months ago
I agree. The more information a person has, the better an understanding of a population can be. Its like in statistics: the larger the sample, the closer to the real value your estimates will be. However, it doesn’t take away the possibility of error, since you are not looking at the whole population. The skew of these social media analytics is one source of this error. However when used in a multidisplinary approach (using more then one method to analyze a population or situation), the whole picture becomes at least a little bit clearer. With the multiple data points a better understanding of what is needed and how the audience is thinking can be formed.
I think social media, especially in today’s technological savvy age, is a key element of any data collection. Twitter, GovLoop, Facebook etc. have become a part of many people’s daily life. So why not access it and use it to your advantage, especially since views that might not otherwise be presented, such as in a town meeting, might be shared. The “in person” interactions in town meetings may stop people from sharing their true feelings if it is different from the norm. A mediated form of interaction may help those with different viewpoints share their thoughts, thus giving a researcher a greater number of people and perspectives to base decisions off of.
I would love to hear other’s thoughts. I am a graduate student at Georgetown University and this topic is right in line with the development of my thesis topic.
Poll of the Week
Could your inbox use a little more awesome?
Sign up to get a daily dose of awesome gov-focused resources, trainings, blogs and articles to help you do you job better.