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Mining Twitter

Today at the New York Times, they've asked their readers whether it is ok for companies to mine posts of consumers for their opinions.

A few of the opinions:

Consumer privacy is extremely important. Twitter, recognizing this, gives individuals the ability to protect their messages, so they are only available to people they specify.

Consumers have fine-grained control to opt-in and opt-out of receiving messages from anyone else. The uses of information on the so-called public timeline are growing every day, so consumers should exercise the same due care with Twitter as they do with their work email.

That being said, companies should take time to consider how the use of Twitter is being used by consumers as a public replacement for the suggestion box. That should be their first priority when it comes to managing data on consumer attitudes.

Brian, Denver, CO

At first it seemed that twitter was a cheap imitation of Facebook, but it really is more complex than that. Journalists can utilize this tool to keep people informed at all times of the day. And if mashines can start auto sending "tweets" it could made getting information across even easier. I'm excited to see how far this can actually go.

— laura, Madison, WI

Though twitter only represents a niche audience, it does provide a real-time example of what consumers are thinking. Specifically, it can help detect when a problem needs to be confronted ASAP.

— ALH, Chicago, IL

What do you think? Head over to the New York Times to give them your opinion.

Jenny Pereira

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