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Cunliffe vs Key: Magnum BI exposes politicians’ social side

The lead up to an election is usually rich with over-promising, carrot dangling, populism and biffo, and Magnum BI has a new website to lay it all bare.

The business was recently launched out of OptimalBI to simplify big data analysis and the new tool PolivsPoli taps into tweets by power players John Key and David Cunliffe, along with retweets and hashtags, to show how each politician is performing.

Co-owner Shane Gibson says the tool is a topical showcase of what MagnumBI can do with big data.

“We built Magnum BI and we flushed structured data like invoices and sales data and stuff we deal with every day,” says Gibson.

“Then we looked at unstructured data like Twitter and Facebook and Snapchat that doesn’t conform to the structured data we’re used to and how we could add value to that with the election coming up. Twitter was a natural fit and was topical and interesting.”

Each week the website will be updated with a visualisation that answers a different question, like which of the two tweets most and which is most talked about. MagnumBI will also analyse Twitter sentiment, but Gibson says this won’t be a strong indicator of the election result until the final week, citing sentiment research carried out after the US presidential election.

Gibson was inspired to name the site Polivspoli after the Mad magazine cartoon series Spy vs Spy.

Amanda Sachtleben is an Auckland writer and social media type, who's also Idealog's former tech editor and business journalist.

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