Riot rumours report wins Data Journalism Award
The Awards are the first international contest recognising outstanding work in the field of data journalism worldwide, with three categories, each subdivided into ‘National/International’ and ‘Local/Regional.’
Farida leads the social media analysis on the 'Reading the Riots on Twitter' project, which is part of the larger Guardian/LSE Reading the Riots study. An interactive website, built by the Guardian Interactive Team, led by Alastair Dant, showing how rumours spread on Twitter during last year’s riots was awarded First Prize for ‘Data Visualisation and Storytelling (National/International).
The academic work was carried out in collaboration with Dr Rob Procter from the University of Manchester, the project lead and Dr Alex Voss from St. Andrews University. The team analysed 2.6 million tweets to show how rumours ebbed and flowed across Twitter as claims were bolstered or debunked. Topics covered ranged from the absurd – animals on the loose after damage to London Zoo – to the true, such as the arson attack on Miss Selfridge in Manchester.
Peter Barron, Google’s Director for External Relations for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, was one of the judges and described Riot Rumours as “the most original and compelling piece of data journalism and visualisation” Another judge, Justin Arenstein, Publisher and CEO of African Eye News Service, said: “the visualisation helps to reveal trends and meaning that would not have been possible using traditional narrative techniques. The use of bubble graphics and organic growth also elegantly reinforce the message that rumours can mimic organisms.”
The winners were announced at a ceremony in Paris last night. Farida and her colleagues share €7,500, a certificate and a ‘digital medal’.