PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Can Twitter actually help gamblers make money on football games?
Some researchers at Carnegie Mellon University think so, and it turns out, that may be just the beginning of what you tell from analyzing people’s tweets.
Researchers at the University of Rochester say they came up with a way to search millions of tweets for ones in which people complained about being sick.
Then, by using GPS, they say they were able to predict where sickness might spread.
Other researchers at Indiana University looked at people’s moods expressed on Twitter to predict the stock market.
And tweets from moviegoers were used by another group to try to determine whether a film with succeed or flop at the box office.
But now, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University say they’ve come up with a way to help “beat the spread” on NFL games.
Using computers, they analyzed millions and millions of tweets to find ones with hashtags such as #Steelers or #Giants, for example.
They looked at the volume of tweets, and the positive or negative words used.
They found it didn’t help much in predicting the winner, but it did help if a gambler is trying to “beat the spread.”
The spread is set by bookmakers in Las Vegas and is the number of points a team is expected to win by.
While the researchers found the advantage wasn’t huge, fans’ expectations expressed in tweets were beneficial enough to help them beat the spread 55 percent of the time.
They’ll present their findings later this week at a conference in Prague.