Accidentally in Code

#unfollowdiddy

Posted on: June 17, 2009

Earlier, I was trying to work out why “Amedisys” was trending (job postings! Crikey), and then people including it in their posts just to get their posts showing up on that trend. Does that work? Do people really follow people who just tweet all the currently trending topics periodically? One guy was trying to pimp out his facebook group follower scheme just including all the popular trending topics with a link to it. The group had 2 members.

And it reminded me of this article that I read this morning, analysising the #unfollowdiddy trend and concluding:

“…the most common reason for unfollowing Diddy was because others were doing so…”

Anyway, he thinks that period had zero effect on Diddy’s follower count. But I graphed the trending topic earlier and we can also graph follower counts, so I put them together below:

Diddy Followers and #unfollowdiddy Trend

I’ve tried to line the graphs up so you can see if there’s any effect. Looks like the trend didn’t reduce his number of followers but the graph did plateau a little. So even if the trend didn’t have the effect it was advertising, and even if it’s not bad publicity, he wasn’t gaining any followers as a result of it.

Looking for this, I found myself at TweetStats. Diddy’s top 5 words are apparently: lets, people, rt, day, lol and the person he most commonly “rt’s” is himself. Hmm.

Twitter trending can be a great way to see what’s going on, what’s hot right now, what are people engaged in, what’s interesting… but there’s so much noise. It can hard to draw conclusions without looking at each trend individually. We know why iPhone is trending today, because the service pack is out etc – but do we need Twitter to tell us that? The blogosphere and the news are buzzing with it too. Weird, unexpected trends are much more interesting – and what I’m taking from this is that they don’t always mean what we think they do.

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