orgtheory.net

i declare complete victory in the more tweets, more votes debate

with 2 comments

In 2013, my collaborators and I published a paper claiming that there is an empirical correlation between relative social media activity and relative vote counts in Congressional races. In other words, if people are talking about the Democrat more than the Republican on Twitter, then the Democrat tends to get more votes. Here’s the regression line from the original “More Tweets, More Votes” paper:

MTMVjournal.pone.0079449.g001.png

People grumbled and complained. But little by little, evidence came out showing that the More Tweets/More Votes model was correct. For example, an article in Social Science Quarterly showed the same results for relative Google searches and senate races:

senate_google

Latest evidence? It works for wikipedia as well. Public Opinion Quarterly published a piece called “Using Wikipedia to Predict Election Outcomes: Online Behavior as a Predictor of Voting” by Benjamin Smith and Abel Gustafason. From the abstract:

We advance the literature by using data from Wikipedia pageviews along with polling data in a synthesized model based on the results of the 2008, 2010, and 2012 US Senate general elections. Results show that Wikipedia pageviews data significantly add to the ability of poll- and fundamentals-based projections to predict election results up to 28 weeks prior to Election Day, and benefit predictions most at those early points, when poll-based predictions are weakest.

Social media DOES signal American election outcomes! I spike the football. I won. Period.

It’s pretty rare that you propose a hypothesis, your prove it’s right and then it is proved right a bunch of times by later research.

#winning

50+ chapters of grad skool advice goodness: Grad Skool Rulz ($4.44 – cheap!!!!)/Theory for the Working Sociologist (discount code: ROJAS – 30% off!!)/From Black Power/Party in the Street / Read Contexts Magazine– It’s Awesome 

Advertisements

Written by fabiorojas

September 19, 2017 at 4:01 am

indiana is the center of the sociological universe

with 2 comments

Weird fact: 4 of the ASA journals are now hosted at Indiana state universities. The American Sociological Review (Notre Dame), the Journal of Health and Social Behavior (Purdue), the Sociology of Education (Purdue) and Contexts (IU). I am not sure what to say about this. It may be dumb luck, but it’s probably a reflection of the fact that this small place has an unusually high number of good sociologists. I’m lucky to be here and I hope sociology continues to grow in this great state.

50+ chapters of grad skool advice goodness: Grad Skool Rulz ($4.44 – cheap!!!!)/Theory for the Working Sociologist (discount code: ROJAS – 30% off!!)/From Black Power/Party in the Street / Read Contexts Magazine– It’s Awesome 

Written by fabiorojas

September 18, 2017 at 4:01 am

truly, giant steps

leave a comment »

50+ chapters of grad skool advice goodness: Grad Skool Rulz ($4.44 – cheap!!!!)/Theory for the Working Sociologist (discount code: ROJAS – 30% off!!)/From Black Power/Party in the Street / Read Contexts Magazine– It’s Awesome 

Written by fabiorojas

September 17, 2017 at 9:21 pm

Posted in uncategorized

october book forum and blogcation

leave a comment »

I will be dealing with deadlines and I am in the field, so I will be on vacation till next week. But I did want to list the books that I intend to review in October. First, I will do a book forum on Jacob Levy’s Rationalism, Pluralism, and Freedom. Then, I plan on covering in October and November the following books:

Want something else on the menu? Send  me a copy!

50+ chapters of grad skool advice goodness: Grad Skool Rulz ($4.44 – cheap!!!!)/Theory for the Working Sociologist (discount code: ROJAS – 30% off!!)/From Black Power/Party in the Street / Read Contexts Magazine– It’s Awesome 

Written by fabiorojas

September 12, 2017 at 4:29 am

Posted in books, fabio, uncategorized

axum, newton (= beastie boy fight)

leave a comment »

50+ chapters of grad skool advice goodness: Grad Skool Rulz ($4.44 – cheap!!!!)/Theory for the Working Sociologist (discount code: ROJAS – 30% off!!)/From Black Power/Party in the Street / Read Contexts Magazine– It’s Awesome

Written by fabiorojas

September 10, 2017 at 4:01 am

should stata just give up and die?

with 24 comments

I love Stata. I use Stata. I make my students use Stata. But I’ve got a problem and it’s called R. The problem is that R is also amazing. My friends use it. My students use it and a lot of social science/data science is now R or Python.

Why is Stata cool? Simple – it is built for stats. Regression is simply reg y x. Weights, clustering, and using subsamples is easy. The manuals and tutorials are cool. It is also way, way stable and there are great libraries that archive algorithms and commands. There is a Stata journal showing you you how to implement the latest models.

But while Stata is amazing, it lacks two major advantages over R: Stata is not free and Stata is not consistent with the broader computer science world (i.e., once you know how to program in general, it is easy to get R and Python, while Stata has it’s own logic).

What should I do? The answer is pretty simple. Learn some R. But the deeper question is what should we do with Stata? Should we continue to use Stata in teaching? Why not dump Stata entirely and make all social science students learn R? What reason do social scientists have in continuing to use Stata, or SAS, or SPSS? Why not just make statistical education and computer science education come together? Why not just say, “look if you want to get a degree in economics, or sociology, or political science, or any field where statistics is common, you will just have to suck it up and learn a little about computer code?” It would be cheaper and prepare students better for a world were statistical programming is now subsumed into basic computer programming. The world of SAS specialists, or COBOL or FORTRAN specialists, is coming to an end. Maybe we should admit it and move on.

As every Marine is a rifleman, every social scientist is an R coder.

50+ chapters of grad skool advice goodness: Grad Skool Rulz ($4.44 – cheap!!!!)/Theory for the Working Sociologist (discount code: ROJAS – 30% off!!)/From Black Power/Party in the Street / Read Contexts Magazine– It’s Awesome

Written by fabiorojas

September 8, 2017 at 4:01 am

the new underground railroad

leave a comment »

The DACA program will come to an end in six months. There is a good chance that Congress will let it expire or pass immigration reforms that makes it very difficult for DREAMers and other undocumented migrants to attain permanent residency and citizenship. They will then be subject to deportation, which is a cruel and unusual punishment.

It is probably time to consider establishing non-violent forms of resistance to unjust laws. One possibility is that activists might consider creating a new underground railroad, whereby friendly people can house people who are travelling to more immigrant friendly places, such as sanctuary cities or other nations that might grant asylum.

You might ask whether underground railroad activities are bad because they break the law. My response is simple: there is no moral obligation to obey unjust laws. As I’ve written before, migration laws are unjust. They do not improve people. They impose harsh penalties for minor infractions. They humiliate people. They create a class of second class citizens. They do not improve natives, aside from the pleasure that some get from seeing others punished. Thus, if activists find a way to circumvent migration laws and policies, then they act from a moral high ground.

50+ chapters of grad skool advice goodness: Grad Skool Rulz ($4.44 – cheap!!!!)/Theory for the Working Sociologist (discount code: ROJAS – 30% off!!)/From Black Power/Party in the Street / Read Contexts Magazine– It’s Awesome

Written by fabiorojas

September 7, 2017 at 4:52 am

Posted in uncategorized