MAPPING HAPPY WITH THE HELP OF SOCIAL MEDIA
Researchers at the University of Vermont are looking into how social media sites could help to map happiness. Using an algorithm they have dubbed their “hedonometer”, the team has used the sentiment of over 35 million geo-tagged check-ins and tweets to analyze the effect of location on overall happiness. Focused on San Francisco Bay, New York City, Chicago, and Los Angeles, the preliminary findings showed that distance from home can greatly impact the happiness of the user.
While most are generally happy at their home-base, farther travels where one may encounter a new and novel experience often elicited the most positive of communications (“great”, “amazing”, “LOL”). Tweets from within a one-kilometer radius of home however, featured the most grumbling- likely because users were going about their boring, daily routines. Researchers expect that more in-depth studies will help to analyze specific locations (restaurants, bars, public transport stations, etc) and offer valuable insight to marketers as well.