Does Twitter change the way people form opinions? Yes, possibly, to the extent that once a consensus is formed, it is hard to change, according to a recent study. Further to Tweet or delete?, Science Magazine reports that
A group of Chinese researchers tackled the subject by gathering some 6 million tweets sent out over a 6-month period, organizing them by topics, such as “iPhone 4,” and analyzing them. They found that opinion evolves rapidly on the site, but levels off quickly to where one opinion remains dominant and is hard to change. This consensus is driven by the endorsements of large accounts on Twitter that tend to have the most influence, according to the study, which was published online today in Chaos.
Here’s the study.