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Title: Need for Tweet: How Open Source Developers Talk About Their GitHub Work on Twitter.
Social media, especially Twitter, has always been a part of the professional lives of software developers, with prior work reporting on a diversity of usage scenarios, including sharing information, staying current, and promoting one’s work. However, previous studies of Twitter use by software developers typically lack information about activities of the study subjects (and their outcomes) on other platforms. To enable such future research, in this paper we propose a computational approach to cross-link users across Twitter and GitHub, revealing (at least) 70,427 users active on both. As a preliminary analysis of this dataset, we report on a case study of 786 tweets by open-source developers about GitHub work, combining automatic characterization of tweet authors in terms of their relationship to the GitHub items linked in their tweets with qualitative analysis of the tweet contents. We find that different developer roles tend to have different tweeting behaviors, with repository owners being perhaps the most distinctive group compared to other project contributors and followers. We also note a sizeable group of people who follow others on GitHub and tweet about these people’s work, but do not otherwise contribute to those open-source projects. Our results and public dataset open up multiple future research directions.
Authors:
Award ID(s):
1901311
Publication Date:
NSF-PAR ID:
10190353
Journal Name:
Mining Software Repositories
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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