Abstract

Twitter has become an increasingly powerful tool for shaping public perception and sharing information, both as a key platform for politicians and a source for public health information. This guide provides an overview of using Twitter as a research tool, showing that, while the platform is often dismissed for not reflecting ‘real life’, it is increasingly at the zeitgeist of the convergence between the physical and the digital world. To analyse these growing developments, the guide discusses and explains the Twitter API, what type of data can be taken from Twitter, and how the open nature of the platform shapes the type of data that is available for research. The guide also discusses important limitations and ethical considerations that should be addressed. As such, the guide provides an important overview for researchers wishing to take advantage of using Twitter for a variety of purposes and addresses important considerations to make in the process.

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