The Times Tracks Twitter Buzz of Candidates With Time-Lapse Diagram

Instead of buying a trending topic like The Washington Post did, The New York Times used Twitter’s well of election-related data to make an animation-based chart that tracks the number of tweets devoted to candidates in all Senate and Governor races over the past few weeks.

As the time line elapses from Oct. 21 to the current second, each candidate’s blue or red orb — for Democratic and Republican candidates, respectively and obviously — expands and shrinks according to their Twitter popularity over time. Scroll your mouse over one of the tinier circles and the candidate’s name and Twitter handle will pop up. There’s also a search feature. Hey, it’s not as game-changing as buying a hashtag, but still pretty cool!

In case you were wondering, the most-covered candidate this election season was Christine O’Donnell, The Upshot reported earlier today. Her circle is so engorged in the Times diagram that it stays at the maximum size for the entirety of the animation. And that’s too bad — we would have loved to see a spike on Oct. 28!

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