Sensing Social Media: A Range of Approaches for Sentiment Analysis

  • Georgios PaltoglouEmail author
  • Mike Thelwall
Part of the Understanding Complex Systems book series (UCS)


Sentiment analysis deals with the computational detection and extraction of opinions, beliefs and emotions in written text. It combines theories and methodologies from a diverse set of scientific domains, such as psychology, natural language processing and machine learning. It fulfils the very important role of transforming the unstructured textual communication between social media users into quantifiable and informed estimations of expressed sentiment, which can subsequently be used by physicists, sociologists, complex system experts in studying the collective properties of such phenomena. The problem has been addressed from two different but often complementary directions: lexicon-based solutions that rely on sentiment dictionaries (i.e., lists of words in which each token is annotated with an indication of the affective content it typically conveys) and machine learning solutions that automatically or semi-automatically learn to detect the affective content of text. In this chapter, we discuss a range of solutions and their strengths and weaknesses in different environments and settings. We conclude that based on the application environment as well as the desired output, different types of analyses are appropriate, with varying levels of predictive accuracy.


Language Model Sentiment Analysis Text Segment Private State Affective Content 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This work was supported by a European Union grant by the 7th Framework Programme, Theme 3: Science of complex systems for socially intelligent ICT. It is part of the CyberEmotions project (contract 231323).


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© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Mathematics and Computer ScienceUniversity of WolverhamptonWolverhamptonUK

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