Abstract

In this How-to Guide, you will learn how to access the Twitter Academic Research Product Track API with R and collect tweet data of different kinds. This API was recently introduced and allows users far more access to Twitter data than ever before. In order to make requests to (get data from) this API, you will be using a dedicated R package called “academictwitteR,” which the authors helped to develop. We will learn how to count tweets matching specific criteria—that is, words or phrases, from particular regions, written in particular languages, over particular time periods. We will also learn how to collect the actual tweets themselves as well as information on the tweeters. On the way, you will learn to consider several methodological questions when collecting data of this kind. Chiefly, we will learn how to denominate our tweet counts by a relevant baseline in order to gauge overtime trends; we will think about how to sample from relevant users, and we will consider the population of individuals or phenomena of interest to which we might make generalizations on the basis of our Twitter-based findings.

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