Participating in a community exemplifies the aspect of sharing, networking and interacting in a social media system. There has been extensive work on characterising on-line communities by their contents and tags using topic modelling tools. However, the role of sentiment and mood has not been studied. Arguably, mood is an integral feature of a text, and becomes more significant in the context of social media: two communities might discuss precisely the same topics, yet within an entirely different atmosphere. Such sentiment-related distinctions are important for many kinds of analysis and applications, such as community recommendation. We present a novel approach to identification of latent hyper-groups in social communities based on users’ sentiment. The results show that a sentiment-based approach can yield useful insights into community formation and metacommunities, having potential applications in, for example, mental health—by targeting support or surveillance to communities with negative mood—or in marketing—by targeting customer communities having the same sentiment on similar topics.
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