One thing about Twitter is that it lends itself to quantitative analysis. Over a short time, it can convey a snapshot of how a thin but important slice of the public is reacting to events. It seems especially noteworthy that Barack Obama, who famously marshaled social media in support of his 2008 campaign, has now become something of a laughingstock on Twitter. The Hill does the math with respect to Obama’s recent bus trip through the Midwest:
Obama’s Midwest tour last week prompted more criticism and ridicule than support on Twitter, according to this week’s Hill Hexagon. …
An analysis of Twitter traffic by Crimson Hexagon over the days of the tour showed that 72 percent of the opinions expressed were negative, while 22 percent were neutral and only 6 percent were favorable.
Among the negative comments, 21 percent were generally negative toward Obama, 17 percent called it a campaign stunt, 15 percent complained about taxpayers picking up the tab, 12 percent offered derisive names for the tour — similar to GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s “Magical Misery Tour” — and 6 percent complained that he was not in Washington working.
An unfavorable/favorable ratio of 72%-6%? That is brutal. If people on Twitter can be assumed to be a leading indicator, this is one more in a long series of bad omens for the Obama administration.
JOE adds: The power of Twitter to agglomerate and measure public sentiment cannot be denied. Consider Derwent Capital Markets, the hedge fund with a $39 million Twitter-driven index that’s using the social network to pick stocks.