If Twitter isn’t the most valuable data source around, it’s at least the most flexible


The amazing thing about Twitter (s twtr) is how fast its day-to-day users became the group that stands to gain the least from the platform. That’s not an indictment of Twitter — its users can still derive a lot of benefit from being able to share and communicate with networks of people far beyond their natural reach — but an assertion about the power of its data. Whatever value Twitter offers on a personal level is dwarfed by the value its immense data footprint to professionals trying to comb it for information.

And the amazing thing about Twitter as a data source is how its value can vary greatly depending on who you ask. For some it’s the real-time nature of the platform. For others, it’s the ability to spot trends or analyze sentiment on certain topics, and for others yet it’s the array of ideas that flow across the…

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