In the post below I looked at the elements of tweets about #AFL and #NRL but the point of twitter is its connected nature. If tweets have an impact on people then they are retweeted. This allows us to look at the way tweets are shared within the communities that follow them. ANd, from that, we get a sense of how connected a community is by a topic.
To do this I used a program called Gephi which is a graphing program designed specifically for graphing networks. When I ran the data from the post below about #AFL and #NRL collected last weekend I found something really interesting. The #AFL tweets were retweeted 73 times. But the #NRL tweets were retweeted 149 times.
So, there are twice as many links between the tweeters about rugby as there are about AFL which suggests that the rugby community is better connected than the AFL community. The results are below:
#AFL Twitter Communitty
#NRL twitter community
Quite a few other interesting things about the football twitter communities are revealed by these graphs. Its pretty clear that the big media companies (especially Fox) have a big impact on the flow of information. On the right of the #AFL graph you can see @Foxsportsnow dominates that part of the network, as does @Foxnrllive at the bottom left of the #NRL graph. Another interesting thing about the structure of these networks is how poorly interconnected they are. The flow of information is highly directional, flowing out from the strong corporate media nodes to individual users. But, these individual users seem not to retweet each other’s tweets to the same extent.
Perhaps collecting tweets over a longer period of time would allow the person to person links in the network to be revealed…