According to this article by the Associated Press, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) goes through 5 million tweets a day.
At the agency's Open Source Center, a team known affectionately as the "vengeful librarians" also pores over Facebook, newspapers, TV news channels, local radio stations, Internet chat rooms - anything overseas that anyone can access and contribute to openly.
From Arabic to Mandarin Chinese, from an angry tweet to a thoughtful blog, the analysts gather the information, often in native tongue. They cross-reference it with the local newspaper or a clandestinely intercepted phone conversation. From there, they build a picture sought by the highest levels at the White House, giving a real-time peek, for example, at the mood of a region after the Navy SEAL raid that killed Osama bin Laden or perhaps a prediction of which Mideast nation seems ripe for revolt.
Reportedly, these "snapshots of opinion" are then compiled into a daily intelligence report for President Obama.
|Why I Do Not Vote|
|Canada's airlines fear violating privacy under new U.S. rules|
|“That's why Facebook wants to collect all the data it can about you.”|
|A single smartphone can DoS federal wiretaps|
|“Wouldn't it be nice if you were rewarded for all of the little good things you do.”|
|“By day, she visits morgues, observes autopsies, and studies pictures of crime scenes.”|
|“Social media is the publisher, not just the postman.”|
|What Nothing Really Means in Seinfeld|
|“Featuring over 2,000 flags in motion to Ludwig van Beethoven.”|
|U.S.S. Enterprise Owner's Manual|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|“It’s taking orders for a real-life flying motorcycle powered by five modified jet engines.”|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|Fake Name Generator|
|iPhone 6, the First Smartphone to Disrupt NSA's Spying|
|“Without ads, how does Netflix manage to make money?”|