Women and men tweet in different ways, and it might not be inherent. A recent study analyzed the different ways men and women are learning to communicate with each other on Twitter.
“Men and women tend to communicate differently in real life,” said Bruce Floyd, UF’s social media specialist. “I’m not surprised that there are gender differences [on Twitter].”
Although age, race and class factor into the way people tweet, researchers took a non-gender stance. The study found even though a number of sex-specific stylistic trends impact the way people tweet, these patterns aren’t true for everyone.
It concluded both genders use language that’s more typical of the “opposite sex.” Users’ tweets are more likely to sound like their sex if they have a substantial amount of followers of the same sex.
Diana Boxer, a professor in UF’s Department of Linguistics, said women often show their emotions.
The study found females use more emoticons and emotion-related terms, a conclusion with which UF journalism senior Danielle Bonilla agreed.
“I do see females using more of the faces,” the 21-year-old said.
Conversely, male Twitter users had fewer attachments to certain forms of expression, using “affirmations like yeah and yea” more often than female users, according to the study.
Boxer said women generally use language to build relationships, and men use it to account for things.
According to the study, swearing is most often associated with male Twitter users.
Floyd said he can tell when he is tweeting to a male or female based on the conversation.
“That’s just intuition — not scientific,” he said.