Twitter Political Index Tracks Buzz in Presidential Race

It's hard to believe that Election Day 2008's Tweet volume represents only about six minutes of Tweets today!  Twitter has become a platform for civic debate and pundits are already calling 2012 the "Twitter election." Following it's political explosive growth, Twitter has launched the Twitter Political Index, a daily measurement of Twitter user's feelings towards the candidates as expressed in nearly two million Tweets each week.  The Twitter Political Index aims to use algorithms to monitor Twitter buzz in support of President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney leading up to the November election.

How does it work?  Each day, the Twitter Political Index evaluates and weighs the sentiment of Tweets mentioning Obama or Romney relative to the more than 400 million Tweets sent on all other topics.  A score of 54 for a candidate indicates that Tweets containing their name or account name are on average more positive than 54 percent of all Tweets.

The Index joins traditional methods like surveys and focus groups to tell a more complete story of political forecasts.  According to a Twitter blog post, the new Index is not intended to replace traditional polling, but reinforce it.

You can check the Twitter Political Index for updates every day after 8:00pm ET to reflect shifts in conversation from that day's events.