If you're sitting on the couch alone watching an event like the State of the Union, you can feel less alone if you follow its hashtag on Twitter, a lot less alone. It’s your choice, really, whether you want to join the conversation, and I (as Word of Mouth) didn’t necessarily plan to last night, but it can be kind of hard not to tweet about what we might say if we were on the air at that moment.
Sweden is trying something new these days. Each week, the Swedish government’s twitter account, “At Sweden,” is being handed over to a Swedish citizen. And for seven days, that person can say anything they want to the account’s 25,000 plus followers. The government calls it “the world’s most democratic twitter account.” J.
In his introduction to an anthology of The Best Music Writing 2011, Alex Ross shares a selection of tweets reacting to bassist and singer Esperanza Spaulding’s upset over teen star Justin Bieber for the Best New Artist Grammy.
Where are all these fracking earthquakes coming from? The correlation between natural gas and shifting plates. Also, Agent Twitter and Double-O-Social Media: predicting riots, epidemics and other social phenomena through aggregate online data. Plus, World of Adcraft: the growing gimmicks of big-budget video game advertisements. And an interview with Chuck Palahniuk, author of Fight Club and Choke. His latest novel is Damned.
The latest attempt to predict the future: scientists use digital data from Twitter, traffic webcams, and bazillion other places to create a model that can foresee epidemics, social upheaval, and more. That' the theory anyway. Much like the weather, you can't always count on the forecast. Sharon Weinberger writes for Nature. She tell us more about the project.