Inferring the Socioeconomic Status of Social Media Users Based on Behaviour and Language

  • Vasileios LamposEmail author
  • Nikolaos Aletras
  • Jens K. Geyti
  • Bin Zou
  • Ingemar J. Cox
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9626)


This paper presents a method to classify social media users based on their socioeconomic status. Our experiments are conducted on a curated set of Twitter profiles, where each user is represented by the posted text, topics of discussion, interactive behaviour and estimated impact on the microblogging platform. Initially, we formulate a 3-way classification task, where users are classified as having an upper, middle or lower socioeconomic status. A nonlinear, generative learning approach using a composite Gaussian Process kernel provides significantly better classification accuracy (\(75\,\%\)) than a competitive linear alternative. By turning this task into a binary classification – upper vs. medium and lower class – the proposed classifier reaches an accuracy of \(82\,\%\).


Social media Twitter User profiling Socioeconomic status Classification Gaussian Process 



This work has been supported by the EPSRC grant EP/K031953/1 (“Early-Warning Sensing Systems for Infectious Diseases”).


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vasileios Lampos
    • 1
    Email author
  • Nikolaos Aletras
    • 1
  • Jens K. Geyti
    • 1
  • Bin Zou
    • 1
  • Ingemar J. Cox
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity College LondonLondonUK
  2. 2.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of CopenhagenCopenhagenDenmark

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