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Showing posts from April, 2019

2019-04-17: Russell Westbrook, Shane Keisel, Fake Twitter Accounts, and Web Archives

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On March 11, 2019 in the NBA, the Utah Jazz hosted their Northwest Division rivals, the Oklahoma City Thunder.  During the game, a Utah fan (Shane Keisel) and a Oklahoma City player (Russell Westbrook) engaged in a verbal exchange, with the player stating the fan was directing racist comments to him and the fan admitting to heckling but denying that his comments were racist.  The event was well documented (see, for example, this Bleacher Report article), and the following day the fan received a lifetime ban from all events at the Vivint Smart Home Arena and the player received a $25k fine from the NBA.

Disclaimer: I have no knowledge of what the fan said during the game, nor do I have an opinion regarding the appropriateness of the respective penalties.  My interest is that after the game, the fan gave at least one interview with a TV station reporter in which he exposed his identity.  That set off a rapidly evolving series of events with both real and fake Twitter accounts, which we…

2019-04-01: Creating a data set for 116th Congress Twitter handles

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Any researcher conducting research on Twitter and the US Congress might think, "how hard could it be in creating a data set of Twitter handles for the members of Congress?". At any given time, we know the number of members in the US Congress and we also know the current members of Congress. At this point, creating a data set of Twitter handles for the members of Congress might seem like an easy task, but it turns out it is a lot more challenging than expected. We present the challenges involved in creating a data set of Twitter handles for the members of 116th US Congress and provide a data set of Twitter handles for 116th US Congress
Brief about the US Congress
The US Congress is a bicameral legislature comprising of the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Congress consists of:

100 senators, two from each of the fifty states.435 representatives, seats are distributed by population across the fifty states.6 non-voting members from the District of Columbia and US terr…