JTA Twitter 100: Return of the Jewish Twitter List


*UPDATE: Join us for a live chat this Thursday, January 6 at 12:30PM ET, featuring Twitalyzer’s Jeff Katz to discuss the #JTA100. Details here.

As Twitter evolves, so do its Jewish users. When JTA released our first ranking in 2009, that list became the fifth-most read article on our website that year. Since then, Twitter introduced a “lists” feature that allows anyone to easily group and track users in one place. While the novelty of creating a Twitter list has worn off, the greater Jewish community’s fascination with social media has increased significantly. The Future of The Jewish Nonprofit summit gave top billing to professional social media managers, while the Jewish Federations of North America’s General Assembly featured a social media “schmooze-up” for which JTA was a media partner.

Here’s how the 2010 list differed from last. But if you’re itching for rankings, scroll down.

Nomination Process
The introduction of a nomination process this year resulted in some differences from the 2009 version. Significantly, JTA only considered Twitter handles that were nominated through our online form. The nomination period was announced on Twitter and ran from November 9-19, 2010. During that time, 177 unique nominees emerged from 641 submissions. No JTA accounts were considered for the list [though we do appreciate the nominations.]

To analyze the results, JTA used Twitalyzer, the same Twitter metric service we used last year. Twitalyzer CEO Eric Peterson explained that Twitalyzer provides data that reflects the 30-day average of Twitter users who have tweeted at least once in the past seven days. Data for the 177 nominees were collected in a single sitting the weekend of December 17-19; there were 10 users whose data were collected up to a week before. This data set represents the approximate 30-day average activity from the end of our nomination deadline.

Descriptions of Twitalyzer metrics can be found on Twitalyzer’s website.  In a phone interview with Twitalyzer’s Jeff Katz, Katz recommended giving the most weight to the Twitalyzer metric called Impact. Said Katz, "Influence is the ability for someone to persuade others to drive a certain action, be that to retweet, share information, drive action or contribute to charity."  Katz also suggested that we incorporate the metrics Engagement and Generosity.  JTA was also interested in the frequency of sharing useful information or engaging in conversation. Distribution for metrics was as follows:

  • Impact-30%
  • Engagement-%15
  • Generosity- %15
  • Retweets (unique users) – %13.33
  • Number of URL’s shared- %13.33
  • Number of Reference (unique users)- 13.33%

In Summation:
This list does not represent an endorsement of who to follow, or even who JTA follows. It represents a metrics-based approach to Twitter usage of a select group of individuals over a particular period of time who were nominated by their peers. All limitations nonwithstanding, we believe this list is still a useful guide to determine who is steering conversation about Jewish life on Twitter.

Presenting the JTA 100 for 2010: 

To track conversation about the 2010 list, follow the #jta100 hashtag live on Twitter, or visit the archive.

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