Wednesday, July 2nd, 2014

Quiz: Can You Tell What Makes a Good Tweet? (Corrected)

The New York Times did a "how well do you know Twitter" quiz, pitting readers against a social media algorithm, and it's a lot of fun. I've tried three times and I can't break 19! But there's one problem:

What are these garbage tweets? This isn't the Twitter I know! This isn't the Twitter anybody knows. Here is a new version of the quiz, corrected and adjusted for the realities of ᴛʜᴇ sᴏᴄɪᴀʟ ᴡᴇʙ. Record your answers and check them at the end!

1. Which Tweet Was Retweeted More?

2. Which Tweet Was Retweeted More?

3. Which Tweet Was Retweeted More?

4. Which Tweet Was Retweeted More?

5. Which Tweet Was Retweeted More?

Screen Shot 2014-07-02 at 1.30.49 PM

6. Which Tweet Was Retweeted More?

7. Which Tweet Was Retweeted More?

8. Which Tweet Was Retweeted More?

9. Which Tweet Was Retweeted More?

Answer key:

1. Tie
2. Tie
3. First
4. Second
5. Second
6. Tie
7. Second
8. Tie
9. First

Congratulations! You beat the algorithm if you got this far at all.

6 Comments / Post A Comment

2611942307@twitter (#281,038)

The NYT examples all have the date and time attached, which not all of these examples do. If you examine the differences between the tweets, and the algorithm's predictions, the criteria they are using to evaluate the potential success will become pretty clear. (Still, a mildly psychopathic marketing human can do much better: 20/25, when the algorithm only got 13/25.

The titles of these articles mislead, however, since the texts nowhere deal with evaluating the quality of the tweet, but its relative marketabilty. There was only one example in the NYT, from British comedian David Mitchell, which was even functionally literate, while the others seen were only slightly less horrific than the ones above by dint of containing some glimpse of information, or at least a pointer to some original content.

The concept of limited characters and a rapidly moving format isn't itself outrageous, it's the marketers abuse of the medium, and the public's willingness to see themselves as products to be marketed, that degrade the platform.

KarenUhOh (#19)

Wait. Stop the car. Dan Abrams with an original thought.

holdup!holdmyphone! (#274,038)

lmbo @ "good tweet"

jfruh (#713)

katie is just going to win this one too :(

eizverson22 (#277,962)

What is the significance of this it?

naturesky29 (#281,202)

I'm a bit confuse…

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