Luton South will be a key seat in the general election if an analysis of the activity associated with it on Twitter is correct.
The people behind the political ‘tweet’ aggregator Tweetminster are conducting an experiment to see whether “activity on Twitter correlates to electoral success”. They explain their experiment like this;
“Our inspiration for this experiment comes from last year’s General Election in Japan, when a group of software engineers and PhD graduates from Tokyo University undertook a study analysing the correlation between ‘online buzz’ and election results. The aim of the study was to assess if word-of-mouth mentions of candidates could help to predict which ones would be successful. The study found that in a majority of constituencies the most mentioned candidate won the seat ….
We thought it would be interesting to run a similar experiment to the Japanese study in the UK using Twitter. From now until the election we will be tracking the most mentioned (i.e. posts and conversations about) constituencies and candidates on Twitter and using this data we will try to map the correlation between buzz, word-of-mouth and the eventual election results through a predictive model.”
In their initial analysis they have identified a number of key battlegrounds defined as seats where the difference between mentions of candidates is 20% or less. They have included Luton South as one of a handful of seats where there is “the narrowest margins between the various parties contesting them”. Is this an indication of how competitive the seat has become and how hard the parties are campaigning?
You can follow Liberal Democrat candidate Qurban Hussain on Twitter.
This content was originally posted on my old Strange Thoughts blog.