Understanding the Demographics of Twitter Users


  • Alan Mislove Northeastern University
  • Sune Lehmann Technical University of Denmark
  • Yong-Yeol Ahn Northeastern University
  • Jukka-Pekka Onnela Harvard University
  • J. Rosenquist Harvard University




Every second, the thoughts and feelings of millions of people across the world are recorded in the form of 140-character tweets using Twitter. However, despite the enormous potential presented by this remarkable data source, we still do not have an understanding of the Twitter population itself: Who are the Twitter users? How representative of the overall population are they? In this paper, we take the first steps towards answering these questions by analyzing data on a set of Twitter users representing over 1% of the U.S. population. We develop techniques that allow us to compare the Twitter population to the U.S. population along three axes (geography, gender, and race/ethnicity), and find that the Twitter population is a highly non-uniform sample of the population.




How to Cite

Mislove, A., Lehmann, S., Ahn, Y.-Y., Onnela, J.-P., & Rosenquist, J. (2021). Understanding the Demographics of Twitter Users. Proceedings of the International AAAI Conference on Web and Social Media, 5(1), 554-557. https://doi.org/10.1609/icwsm.v5i1.14168