Humboldt State University students recently combed through 150,000 geo-coded tweets to determine where America's 140-character racism and homophobia are concentrated.
The researchers put together Google maps compiling their findings. You can zoom in or zoom out to focus on a particular region and sort by particular slurs.
One interesting nugget as it pertains to Minnesota is that the Twin Cities region is one of the only ones in the country where the anti-Asian slur "c****k" is still in vogue.
[jump] First of all, from the Guardian, here's some information about the researchers' methodology:
Using humans rather than machines means that this research was able to avoid the basic pitfall of most semantic analysis where a tweet stating 'the word homo is unacceptable' would still be classed as hate speech. The data has also been 'normalised', meaning that the scale accounts for the total twitter traffic in each county so that the final result is something that shows the frequency of hateful words on Twitter. The only question that remains is whether the views of US Twitter users can be a reliable indication of the views of US citizens. Tell us what you think by posting a comment below.Here's a map looking at the use of the aforementioned "C-word" slur throughout the country (all maps below can be enlarged by clicking on them):
Another interesting local nugget is that northwest Minnesota seems to be a hotbed for use of a certain anti-lesbian slur:
Here are the national maps for use of homophobic and racial slurs in general:
And here's a localized look at homophobia and racism on Twitter: