(1) Overview


Spatial coverage

Description: Data collected online, so no geographic source information collected

Temporal coverage

Data collected from 2011 annually to 2014

(2) Methods


The platform for data collection through online survey for this thesis was the UCL-supported Opinio survey software designed by ObjectPlanet Inc. The survey software is a web-based survey tool, which is available free of charge to UCL staff and postgraduate researchers. Each survey contains a mixture of open and closed questions covering the use of different aspects of the Twitter platform.

Sampling strategy

Online survey distributed via Twitter. The data for the Twitter surveys was first initiated by searching for and following 1000 Twitter users that had described themselves as academic, professional or active amateur archaeologists somewhere within their user profile biography as discovered through the Twitter search facility, and the use of archaeology-related lists belonging to existing contacts. I also spent time tweeting about the research plans and discussing the survey questions, aims and possible outcomes with a number of familiar followers in the archaeological sector on Twitter. I used the hashtags #archaeology and #pubarch in the tweets relating to this survey in order to maximise new follows, retweets and greater awareness of the forthcoming research amongst existing followers. The first survey was open for contributors from 9.30am BST on the 1 April 2011 to 9.30am BST on 15 April 2011; the second from 11am GMT on 1 February 2012 to 1pm GMT on 15 February 2012; the third from 1pm BST on 11 April 2013 to 1pm BST on 24 April 2013. The differences in dates for 2012 were due to my differing availability to administer the survey in April 2012. A request for participation with the survey was tweeted, and subsequently retweeted by my followers, on a daily basis between these dates. The tweeted request for participation contained a link to the survey and a request to forward the survey via Twitter to interested parties was included in the tweet.

(3) Dataset description

Object name

Data type

Primary data

Format names and versions


Creation dates

April 2011 – April 2013





Repository location

Publication date


(4) Reuse potential

There is scope for using these data for sentiment analysis, further qualitative and quantitative analysis, and for reference both within the discipline of archaeology and in the wider digital humanities and internet studies communities. The data offer potential for more analysis of location of use of Twitter within an archaeological context, the type of device used for Tweeting, the presentation of ‘self’ through social media and the types and locations of community and networking provided by the use of the platform.