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article imageCoronavirus and social media: How to stay positive

By Tim Sandle     Apr 7, 2020 in Internet
How people are responding to the coronavirus pandemic and what their reactions are can be tacked through social media. In fact, social media has been previously tested out as an effective way for tracking public opinion.
A new review, from LawnStarter, looks at the U.S. population and assesses messages sent on the micro-blogging site Twitter in relation to coronavirus. This takes in some 200,000 tweets sent during the early part of the SARS-CoV-2 outbreak. The data was collected between the period February 20, 2020, to March 20, 2020.
The data reveals that while public concerns are high and stress levels are rising, overall the U.S. population are expressing signs of resilience.
The data was assessed across two-factors, which were:
Sentiment — This measured whether Twitter users were positive, negative or neutral in their comments. In the data world, this is typically referred to as “polarity.”
Context — Looking at the words within each message to see what else people were talking about within their coronavirus tweets.
Some of the key findings of the study include the fact that since February 20, 2020 there has been a massive 1179 percent increase in number of daily tweets sent about the subject of coronavirus and the disease COVID-19, together with specifics about the causative virus (SARS-CoV-2).
While it might have been expected that social media messaging is associated with the more dangerous aspects of the pandemic, the findings reveal that 60 percent of tweets are positive about the coronavirus situation.
Outside of coronavirus, the next most popular subject area (which may also be partly linked to the lockdown) are about alcohol (to drink, rather than as used for surface or hand disinfection). Some 13 percent of tweets related to this subject.
Next, and with a much lower proportion, the U.S. population are tweeting about politics, although this currently only accounts for 2 percent of the total number of the Twitter messages sent.
Another area being tweeted about was the stock market decline and with getting hold of basic household supplies.
More about cornavirus, Covid19, Social media
 
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