Tuesday, June 29, 2010
You guys. I have GOT to tell you about the Eric Clapton conspiracy. It’s a little complicated, so bear with me.
This week, I discovered my new favorite toy: wordle. Wordle allows anyone to make pretty, formattable word clouds out of any chunk of text. I was originally using it to word-cloud old diary entries, but quit when the most-used words were “Why????,” the names of ex boyfriends, and entirely too many adverbs (like “entirely”).
Wordle is also pretty great for analyzing Twitter hashtag trends, as long as you are a computer genius like I am. After painstakingly stripping today’s #musicmonday tweets to their most basic, recommendiest cores (what up “find and replace”?), I was able to create this majestic cloud:
Most of this is pretty unsurprising. There are topical appearances: Lady Gaga is generally a big deal on the Internet, but especially this week thanks to a just-released Rolling Stone cover and some rowdy baseball antics. Drake is all over the damn place these days, and was at Sunday night’s BET awards. Monday was the anniversary of Michael Jackson’s death, so “MJ,” “King [of pop]” and other Jackson-love tweets are easy to explain. Eminem just released “Recovery,” and it’s gotten plenty of buzz.
There are also perpetual favorites: Justin Bieber is the indomitable Prince of Twitter, thanks to the legions of terrifying tween girls who want to make out with him without entirely knowing what “making out” entails. And John Mayer is well loved by the Twitter universe for his scatological overshares and on-again-off-again relationship with tabloid-friendly starlets and, like, technology in general.
But then, right up there with the Biebers and the Gagas and the MJs you see: Eric Clapton. I mean, Eric Clapton is great. I frickin’ LOVE “Layla.” There are many colorful, entertaining stories associated with his personal life. Yet I can see no reason for his Twitter dominance.
So, detective work. First: all these Clapton tweets are coming from the same four usernames. TheVideoDJ, amandajones4321, wendyyoung333, and MISSBLIP2 are responsible for every Clapton tweet on Monday. If profile pictures are to be believed, amandajones4321 and wendyyoung333 are both busty, attractive young women and The VideoDJ and MISSBLIP2 both have cheesy taste in clipart. wendyyoung333 seems to post sports videos as well as music videos; the other three seem only to post about music. And while they all post some links to contemporary favorites, there’s an awful lot of Eric Clapton and James Taylor.
The VideoDJ links resolve to a concert tickets website. Ditto amandajones4321 and wendyyoung333. This particular concert tickets website also seems to provide advice about how to overcome insomnia, how to stop snoring, and where to apply for scholarships. Apparently they have a wide range of expertise. That said, Eric Clapton is on tour, and these people are clearly trying to sell tickets. Mystery solved.
MISSBLIP2, on the other hand, just posts Grooveshark links—they go straight to a streaming version of the song, rather than to a commercial website. There doesn’t seem to be any motivation for her perpetual music tweets besides a sincere joy in music. That said, she also runs a Twitter-based fan page for George Lopez (“the best comedian ever”).
Role #mmodel: “richmandoo: I'm doing #musicmonday cos I'm super bored on a bus.” I hate to break this to you, buddy, but…you’re doing it wrong. It helps to, you know, include some music in your #musicmonday tweets.
My #musicmonday pick: “Layla” by…no just kidding. I cannot stop listening to “40 Day Dream,” by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. It’s getting to be a problem.
Posted by Allyson at 8:17 AM