The Association for Qualitative Research
The Hub of Qualitative Excellence

Twitter's online research community

In November, Twitter announced its first foray into the world of research by setting up its first online community of UK users, #birdsignals.

Membership is selective, with willing participants having to enter their details to ensure they meet one of Twitter's desired demographic groups, but once you're in, you're eligible take part in monthly surveys and other research activities.

The online community will allow Twitter to obtain qualitative and quantitative information on how users claim they use the platform, but more excitingly, Twitter has made linking your account with your Twitter handle a prerequisite for joining, suggesting that it will also be able to gather behavioural data on how their respondents are actually engaging with the site.

  1. birdsignals is intended to help Twitter understand more about how they should improve their platform going forwards. However, if this online research community proves to be successful, I envisage a similar service being opened up to brands.


Kirsty Yeomans
Head of Qualitative Research, The Forge

This article was first published in InBrief magazine, January 2014
Copyright © Association for Qualitative Research, 2014