HOAXYbeta

Visualize the spread of information on Twitter

FAQ Index
What is Hoaxy?
Hoaxy is a tool that visualizes the spread of information online using the Twitter Search API.
How does Live Search work?
Live Search uses the Twitter Search API to retrieve relevant, popular, or mixed tweets matching your search query. It is compatible with all advanced search operators. At most, Hoaxy is capable of visualizing the top 1000 accounts and in the case of a Live Search, this will be the most recently active 1000 accounts if sorted by Recent.
Live Search mode uses the Twitter Search API to retrieve relevant, popular, or mixed tweets matching your search query. It is compatible with all advanced search operators. For example, instead of puppy you could search for puppy OR kitten or puppy filter:media.
What does the visualization show?
Hoaxy visualizes two aspects of the spread of claims and fact checking: temporal trends and diffusion networks. Temporal trends plot the cumulative number of Twitter shares over time. The user can zoom in on any time interval. Diffusion networks display how claims spread from person to person. Each node is a Twitter account and two nodes are connected if a link to a story is passed between those two accounts via retweets, replies, quotes, or mentions. The color of a connection indicates the type of information: claims and fact checks. Clicking on an edge reveals the tweet(s) and the link to the shared story; clicking on a node reveals claims shared by the corresponding user. The network may be pruned for performance.
What is the bot score and how is it calculated?
One can think of the bot score as the likely level of automation of an account, where a 5 may indicate a large amount of automation, and 0 may indicate little to no automation. Bot scores are calculated using a machine learning algorithm trained to classify the level of automation an account presents. More information about this topic can be found in the Botometer FAQ.
What if I see some bot scores that are wrong? How can I help?
Social bot detection is a hard problem. We are constantly improving our tool’s accuracy, but there will be accounts that our tool fails to classify. You can assist us in making more accurate classifications. You might recognize your own account. Or you might have information that allows you to recognize some other account as most likely human or bot. In these cases, you can provide feedback on those accounts. Do this by clicking on the account (node) and then the Feedback button. Feedback helps us better distinguish between humans, bots, and everything in between, so your help is greatly appreciated.
What is the source of social media data?
At the moment we only collect data from Twitter.
How do I add a Hoaxy story to my own website?
Click the “Embed” button at the bottom of the middle navigation menu. Then, copy the code in the popup and paste it into the body of your site’s html code or in the platform you are using as directed by that platform. What will be visible on your site or platform is a widget that should look similar to the one in the popup.
Can I download the results of a story on my own computer?
Yes! Click the “Export” button, found at the bottom of the middle navigation menu. This should download or ask you permission to download a comma separated values (CSV) file. Each row in the file represents a connection in the visualization and can be thought of as a tweet. The columns correspond to the features of the tweet, e.g., who posted it, who was mentioned, when the tweet was published, etc.
Can I import my own data into Hoaxy's Visualization tool?
Yes! Instead of searching for a specific query, click the "Import Data" button. From there, you can upload a CSV or JSON file containing Tweet information. This works best with data exported directly from a previous Hoaxy query, however, correctly formatted files can be used regardless of source.
When importing files, what format does the data need to be in?
Hoaxy can visualize CSV and JSON files as long as the data is formatted correctly. While this works best with data exported directly from a Hoaxy query, any data using the columns or field names found in the exported files should work.
Do you access any private conversations?
No, we only access public tweets.
Can I cite Hoaxy in my work?
Yes, if you use Hoaxy for your work then please cite the following articles:

[1] Chengcheng Shao, Pik-Mai Hui, Lei Wang, Xinwen Jiang, Alessandro Flammini, Filippo Menczer, Giovanni Luca Ciampaglia (2018). Anatomy of an online misinformation network. PLOS ONE, e0196087. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0196087

[2] Chengcheng Shao, Giovanni Luca Ciampaglia, Onur Varol, Kaicheng Yang, Alessandro Flammini, and Filippo Menczer (2018). The spread of low-credibility content by social bots. Nature Communications, 9:4787. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-018-06930-7

[3] Chengcheng Shao, Giovanni Luca Ciampaglia, Alessandro Flammini, and Filippo Menczer (2016). Hoaxy: A Platform for Tracking Online Misinformation. In Proceedings of the 25th International Conference Companion on World Wide Web (WWW '16 Companion), pp. 745-750. http://doi.org/10.1145/2872518.2890098

What technology does Hoaxy use?
Hoaxy uses Javascript, Bootstrap, NV.D3 (for the chart), and Sigma-js (for the network). We collect data from Twitter using the Filter API.
Is Hoaxy open source?
Yes. This makes it possible for colleagues, fact checkers, and reporters around the world to deploy versions of the tool to map the spread of claims from their own sources, in their own countries and languages. The code is available in two repositories: a backend and a frontend. Please contact us to let us know if you are using our code.
Why am I asked to log in using my Twitter account?
To retrieve search results from the Twitter API on your behalf. We also seek your permission to connect to the Twitter API if you want to refresh the bot scores in the visualization. This is needed to fetch the data needed to recompute the scores on your behalf. We do not store your Twitter personal information, nor do we use any permissions or data to do anything beyond what is necessary to provide the Hoaxy service. More information can be found on the Botometer FAQ.
Who are the Hoaxy developers?
Hoaxy is a joint project of the Indiana University Network Science Institute (IUNI) and the Center for Complex Networks and Systems Research (CNetS). Filippo Menczer, Alessandro Flammini, and Giovanni Luca Ciampaglia coordinate the project. Other past or current team members include Chengcheng Shao, Mihai Avram, Ben Serrette, Valentin Pentchev, Lei Wang, Gregory Maus, Liang Chen, Onur Varol, Clayton Davis, Kaicheng Yang, Chathuri Peli Kankanamalage, Marc McCarty, and Sarah Beverton. We are members of the of First Draft Academic Partner Network. The project is supported by a Knight Prototype grant from the Democracy Fund.
How can I contact the Hoaxy team?
The best way to contact the team is by using the contact information found at the OSoMe website. You can also tweet us at @OSoMe_IU but we cannot promise to monitor Twitter at all times.
What happened to Article Search?
Yes, we used to have this feature, but lack the resources to maintain its functionality. We realized that the live search of the Twitter Search API provides the most value from Hoaxy, so we decided to devote resources to improving that functionality instead.