Tweet Your Influence

September 24, 2010  |  

(Fast Company) — Influence has been a hot topic here for the past few months. But what determines someone’s influence on Twitter? Number of tweets? Number of followers? Number of followers’ followers? Researchers from Northwestern University seem to have found the answer, and it’s a lot more complicated than who follows who.

Ramanathan Narayanan, a Ph.D candidate at Northwestern University, and his professor Alok Choudhary developed a project that tracks influence on Twitter based on specific topics. For example, LeBron James might wield a lot of influence about the topic “basketball” but very little about “politics.” The research project started in May, and the website,, launched at the beginning of this month.

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