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editorial

Is Boston too talkative for Twitter?

With its throngs of tech-savvy students, cutting-edge entrepreneurs, and generally plugged in residents, it’d be safe to guess that Boston is one of the more Twitter-friendly cities around the globe. Yet even though the vast social networking site has launched careers, broken news, and sparked revolutions, it turns out that when compared to other cities, Boston just isn’t that into tweeting.

According to a study released by the French social media research firm Semiocast, the Hub doesn’t even rank among the top 20 most-active cities on Twitter. Jakarta, Tokyo, London, Sao Paulo, and New York top the list, which Semiocast compiled by analyzing 517 million Twitter profiles for one month last year.

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Boston’s Twitterphiles have been quick to point out that the study tracked the total number of tweets per city, not Tweets-per-capita, so it would only makes sense that areas with larger populations — like Jakarta and Tokyo, the top two cities — would best cities with smaller populations. But following that logic, Boston should have beaten out Miami and Atlanta, both of which made it into the top 20.

In some circles, Boston’s relative aversion to Twitter could be seen as a knock against the city. To others, however, it suggests Bostonians just like tuning into the real world more than following it online. Then again, maybe it’s thanks to our high concentration of intellectuals — and the passionately verbose — that Bostonians just can’t say what we want to in 140 characters or less.

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