Paul L. Caron

Monday, January 26, 2015

Law Prof Twitter Rankings

Twitter (2014)Ryan Whalen (Northwestern), The Law Prof Twitter Network:

Following recent discussions about the importance of blogging/tweeting to contemporary academia (see: LSE via TaxProf), and Bridget Crawford’s Law Prof Twitter Census (version 3.0) over at TheFacultyLounge, I thought I’d do some number crunching and network building.

I wrote a short script to read all of the law prof twitter handles included in the census and query the twitter API to get the follower lists and statistics for each user. This allowed me to both rank law prof twitterers (because we all know how much people like to rank things) and project them onto an interactive network so we can see how they relate to one another. ...

The law prof network (consisting of following relationships amongst law profs in the census) has 535 nodes and 16354 edges (directed density = 0.057). The entire network (including all of the followers of all of the law profs) is much larger. In total there are 741,385 unique twitter users who follow law profs.

The table below lists the top twenty profs by number of followers:

Handle Name School Followers
lessig Lawrence Lessig Harvard 324,336
SportsLawGuy Gabe Feldman Tulane 33,728
zittrain Jonathan Zittrain Harvard 30,787
McCannSportsLaw Michael McCann New Hampshire 29,771
ZephyrTeachout Zephyr Teachout Fordham 25,328
CassSunstein Cass Sunstein Harvard 21,333
gregorymcneal Greg McNeal Pepperdine 17,440
scrawford Susan Crawford Cardozo 15,641
superwuster Tim Wu Columbia 11,804
JonathanTurley Jonathan Turley George Washington 11,715
bethnoveck Beth Simone Noveck NYLS 10,422
patentlyo Dennis Crouch Missouri 9,889
PrivacyLaw Michael Scott Southwestern 9,024
garylfrancione Gary Francione Rutgers-Newark 8,844
adamwinkler Adam Winkler UCLA 8,706

Limiting our rankings to those professors who have the most followers amongst other law professors on twitter, changes the results quite a bit:

Handle Name School Prof Followers
DeanDBRodriguez Daniel B. Rodriguez Northwestern 193
lessig Lawrence Lessig Harvard 187
nancyleong Nancy Leong Denver 167
orinkerr Orin Kerr George Washington 166
CassSunstein Cass Sunstein Harvard 149
profbcrawford Bridget Crawford Pace 143
zittrain Jonathan Zittrain Harvard 140
steve_vladeck Steve Vladeck American 136
CharlotteGarden Charlotte Garden Seattle 136
FrankPasquale Frank Pasquale Maryland 133
lsolum Larry Solum Georgetown 133
DanielSolove Dan Solove George Washington 130
daniellecitron Danielle Citron Maryland 130
SoCalTaxProf Paul Caron Pepperdine 127
profabartow Ann Bartow Pace 120

If we group profs by school and rank them by followers, the top twenty look as below. Obviously having a twitter superstar on the faculty really boosts the ranking.

School Followers
Harvard 383,145
George Washington 40,905
Tulane 33,880
New Hampshire 30,421
Fordham 29,133
Pepperdine 23,539
NYU 18,245
Univ College Dublin Sutherland 16,093
Cardozo 16,000
Georgetown 15,823
Duke 13,111
Chicago 12,716
Maryland 12,235
Columbia 11,804
NYLS 11,591

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