Ala., Miss., lead country in hate tweets

Nov. 10, 2012 at 12:22 PM
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LEXINGTON, Ky., Nov. 10 (UPI) -- Alabama and Mississippi led the nation in racist tweets commenting on the election but online racism "is all too easy to find" in most states, a study found.

Floating Sheep compared the number of tweets using racist slurs that anticipated or commented on the election between Nov. 1 and Nov. 7 to the number of geocoded tweets from that state. The group found that Alabama and Mississippi led the nation.

A number of other states in the South, along with Utah, Missouri and North Dakota, also had high LQs -- or location quotient inspired measures, the geographers said.

LQs higher than 1 show an above-average proportion of racist tweets. Alabama's was 8.1 and Mississippi's 7.4.

States in the northeast and on the West Coast -- except for Oregon -- had low LQs.

In some states, like Idaho, where relatively few residents appear to have discovered Twitter, there were no identifiably racist tweets. Rhode Island was notable for having no racist tweets despite high Twitter use.

"But lest anyone elsewhere become too complacent, the unfortunate fact is that most states are not immune from this kind of activity," the group said. "Racist behavior, particularly directed at African Americans in the U.S., is all too easy to find both offline and in information space."

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