Computational Social Science: Understanding Terrorist Attacks on Twitter
September 7, 2016
By Erin C. McGrath and Cody Buntain Reported terrorist attacks increased dramatically over the last decade or so, from just under 3,000 per year in 2001 to nearly 17,000 in 2014, amplifying the number of people subjected to the effects of terrorist attacks nearly six-fold over the last decade. At the same time, the introduction, popularity, ...
Dataset Spotlight: How ISIS Uses Twitter- Interview with Khuram Zaman
July 20, 2016
by Megan Risdal Many of us know that data collection, cleaning, and processing is a time-consuming and sometimes arduous ordeal that requires patience along with elbow grease. It’s usually the end product—insights from an analysis to feed action—that motivates us to munge. In this interview, Khuram Zaman of Fifth Tribe, explains how a desire to ...
Challenges of Using Twitter as a Data Source: An Overview of Current Resources
February 10, 2016
by Wasim Ahmed In one of my previous blog posts I outlined a number of software applications that could be used to capture and analyse data from Twitter. In this blog post I outline some of the methodological, ethical, privacy, and copyright issues associated with using Twitter as a data source. Twitter can be used as a ...
Al-Shabaab Returns to Twitter
February 3, 2016
by David Mair On Thursday 21st January 2015, al-Shabaab attacked the Lido Beach area of Mogadishu in the heart of Somalia.  The area is regarded as Somalia’s premier tourism destination; where Somalis can relax on white sands and enjoy the warm waters of the Indian Ocean.  Despite being on the Foreign Office no-go list, Lido ...
Defence is Fighting ISIS Online, but We Don’t Know it Works
December 30, 2015
by David Donaldson The Australian Defence Force’s latest initiative in the war on the Islamic State, a Twitter account disputing “Daesh lies”, builds on lessons from the problems encountered by earlier attempts at countering IS propaganda — but nobody really knows if it will work. The @fight_DAESH account, which became the object of unwanted attention when ...
Wilayat Twitter and the Battle against Islamic State’s Twitter Jihad
November 11, 2015
by Elizabeth Pearson In the past two years, the so-called Islamic State (IS) has made Twitter its own, many of its supporters even describing the social media forum as an IS ‘wilayat’ or ‘province’. As academics and policy-makers alike become increasingly aware of the role of the online environment in radicalisation, the use of Twitter ...