Collecting Pennsylvania Political Twitter Data

Andrew M. Dudash, John E. Russell


During the two most recent elections we have seen the importance of social media, and Twitter in particular, for political discourse. This paper describes the effort of an academic library to collect election-related Twitter data from Pennsylvania-specific organizational accounts and hashtags for 2018 and 2020 in the run-up and aftermath of both election cycles. Because of its importance to understanding contemporary politics and its historic value, libraries need to consider the opportunity to collect and make this data accessible to Pennsylvanians.  

Full Text:



DeJesus, I. (2018, November 19). Midterm voter turnout in Pa. keeps up with historic national levels.

Documenting the Now. (2020). Hydrator. GitHub.

George Washington University Libraries. (2016). Social Feed Manager. Zenodo.

Pinter, A. T., Goldman, B., & Novotny, E. (2017). Pennsylvania perspectives of the 2016 election: A project to collect web and social media content around significant societal events. Pennsylvania Libraries: Research & Practice, 5(2), 96-106.

Shaffer, Kris. (2018). tweetmineR. GitHub.

Shortell, T. (2020, November 17). Biden vs. Trump showdown drove Pennsylvania voter turnout to historic high. The Morning Call.

Twitter. (2021). “More About Restricted Uses of the Twitter APIs.” Twitter Developer Terms.


Copyright (c) 2021 Andrew M. Dudash, John E. Russell

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.