I happened upon MappyHealth doing research for my public health class and found that it was extremely interesting. It takes tweets and analyzes them to give us a picture of our health.
For instance, this morning I am still suffering from allergies so I thought I would see what is going on in the world of acute respiratory illness (it was one of the listed tags under conditions.) Here is the graph that I saw telling me the volume of tweets. It looks like we’ve had something brewing in mid-October.
I even found out what has been going on in Texas over the last week.
Even more interesting is that if you click on a graph from your search you can even get to the tweet level – showing who – by Twitter name – posted and what they posted to put them in that condition group. So here is the one for Texas for STDs! 🙂
Now what do you think of this being out there? Is it helpful or privacy invasive? Were you aware that your Tweets could get you onto MappyHealth?
My first reaction was shock when I saw that it got down to the Twitter name level. But my other voice – who often plays devil’s advocate – said that if I’m going to put something on Twitter that might put me in the category …. well, maybe I should think of that first.
Overall, do I see this as a helpful tool for public health and awareness? Maybe. I’m not too convinced of its validity in the world of true research and statistics. But it is interesting…
What do you think of it? Go try it out and tell me… you have to try it!