The six municipal mayoral elections held last year in Taiwan raised a burst of internet celebrity politicians. Candidates run live broadcast on social media to deliver their political opinions and these celebrity politicians caused a surge in internet traffic. However, did the internet volume really help the candidates to win the elections? To answer this question, the “Reporter” cooperated with the OpView which was a company monitoring social media usage to analyze more than ten thousand of data one month prior to the Election Day, including the internet volume trend and keyword research. We used quantitative method to analyze the internet volume, high and low points, and keywords as well as interviews and text analytics. After multiple verifications, it showed that the connection between the internet volume and real votes was weak. The key to win the elections still counted on the traditional ground battles.
What makes this project innovative?
To in-depth analyze Taiwan’s social media network, our team cooperated with Taiwan’s top word-of-mouth monitoring services to collect more than ten thousand of word-of-mouth data and analyze content from more than 30,000 social media channels by using the NLP (Natural Language Processing) of social big data. It was a graph-based explanatory journalism report. For better user experience, we redesigned the layout and created two versions: left/right layout for desktop usage, and up/down layout for mobile usage. As the reader slid into each layout, the corresponding graphs and texts would display. With this design users could read without moving back and forth and had a better reading experience. Lots of readers love this design.
What was the impact of your project? How did you measure it?
This project makes the main media followed up this topic, discussing the internet volume. Many readers were surprised of the format and the resultf of the project. By the results of this election, it indicated a weak connection between the internet volume and real votes which meant that the volume of posts could only be used as a reference. The internet volume did not certainly win more votes. Although the political freshman Hang Kou-Yu had large volume, the key to his election victory was the traditional battles on the ground eventually. The high votes he won relied on the power of the political party Kuomintang and the support of locals. After the data analysis and expert interviews, we found that the future election campaign will not only focus on the volume, but on how to integrate network “air-to-air combat” with ground battle. Also, the internet volume may cause positive or negative impacts. The way to turn the negative impact into positive one can even be the essential key to winning.
Source and methodology
Our team processed the data from more than 30,000 social media channels by using the Natural Language Processing (NLP) and collected social word-of-mouth for analysis. This report was built around the mayoral elections in the six municipalities to screen the keyword research and volume. We used quantitative method to analyze the internet volume, high and low points, and keyword research of each candidate. With expert interviews and text analytics, here we came to this conclusion.
Chen Hua Chen, Bo Wei Wu, Yu Yo Lin, Yu Chen Huang, Chen Na Lin, Fa Hsien Li, Chung Jen Yu, Shih Yun Chang, Chuang Pichi, Szu Hua Chen, Jung Shin Ho