Kajsa Hartig

A blog about Cultural Heritage and Digital Communication

Breaking all records – and talking about hair

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Eurovision Song Contest in Sweden 2012

Eurovision Song Contest in Sweden 2012

So the Swedish version of the Eurovision Song Contest has come to an end, we have a winner Loreen who will represent the country in Baku in May. And the conversation on Twitter broke all records.

Almost 50 000 unique twitter accounts tweeted during the contest (there are only about 80 000 active accounts in Sweden, out of 150 000 registered). Almost 300 000 tweets and 60 000 retweets are stunning figures.

Following the talks on Twitter during the evening, this Saturday, I was amazed at the fact that hair is a topic that engages, upsets, unites and divides. People commented on the hairstyle of the contestants, much more than the outfits. One contestant had grown a beard, another had a very apparent fringe. Even the hosts were commenting on hair. One singer had tattooes and shaved armpits. But what made the entire twitter community explode was at the very end when one of the cameras zoomed in on a woman in the audience who had an unshaved armpit.The result: An enormous stream of tweets, pros and cons, the day after a bunch of blog posts.

As it happens we are, at Nordiska museet where I work, collecting stories about hair at Hårwebben. Everything about body hair, facial hair, hair styles, beards, whigs, etc. The social TV happening, during the ESC Swedish contest 2012, provided us with a peek into almost 50 000 people’s talks about things that matter, that upsets or is amusing.

There are several reasons for developing great tools for analyzing social media and the organisation’s presence in different channels. One is to achieve success. But social media is also opening up for collecting knowledge and understanding society in a much greater sense. And there is, I believe, a need to develop tools for collecting and analyzing content (ideas, opinions, knowledge) not just in one social media channel, but across different channels. And looking at the vast amount of data maybe we have to start thinking about automatic harvesting and analyzing. A reverse Google Analytics for museums?

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