Measuring public opinion with social media data

Marko Klašnja, Pablo Barberá, Nicholas Beauchamp, Jonathan Nagler, Joshua A. Tucker

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter examines the use of social networking sites such as Twitter in measuring public opinion. It first considers the opportunities and challenges that are involved in conducting public opinion surveys using social media data. Three challenges are discussed: identifying political opinion, representativeness of social media users, and aggregating from individual responses to public opinion. The chapter outlines some of the strategies for overcoming these challenges and proceeds by highlighting some of the novel uses for social media that have fewer direct analogs in traditional survey work. Finally, it suggests new directions for a research agenda in using social media for public opinion work.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Polling and Polling Methods
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages28
ISBN (Electronic)9780190213299
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • Political opinion
  • Public opinion
  • Public opinion surveys
  • Representativeness
  • Social media
  • Social networking sites
  • Twitter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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