Taking tweets to the streets: A spatial analysis of the Vinegar Protests in Brazil

Marco Toledo Bastos, Raquel da Cunha Recuero, Gabriela da Silva Zago


In this paper we investigate the relationship between the geographic location of protestors attending demonstrations in the 2013 Vinegar protests in Brazil and the geographic location of users that tweeted the protests. We explored the overlap between different sources of geographic information from Twitter — namely geocode, hashtag, and user profile — provided by multiple samples drawn from a population of three million tweets related to the events and compared the data to the location of protestors attending the street demonstrations. We adjusted the data for the uneven distribution of the population and performed geospatial and spatial clustering analysis over sets of spatial locations. We found evidence for the hypotheses that users tweeting the protests are geographically distant from the street protests and that users from geographically isolated areas rely on Twitter hashtags to remotely engage in the demonstrations.


Twitter; Activism; Spatial analysis; Protest; Vinegar; Brazil

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5210/fm.v19i3.5227

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