Rebecca Blood turns my attention to Lexicalist.com, which analyzes online text and demographics to figure out who's talking about what where. You type in a word, Lexcialist calculates the prevalence of that word in online conversations by state, sex, and age.
So I type in South Dakota. The results:
Lexicalist.com ties most of the conversation about South Dakota, 81.2%, to speakers/bloggers/tweeters in South Dakota. Among outsiders, we figure most prominently in the consciousness of our northern neighbors: North Dakotan online sources contribute 6.2% of mentions of "South Dakota (certainly 5.2% are prefaced with the phrase, "Gee, why can't we be more like..."). Wyoming produces 4.0% of South Dakota mentions; Iowa 2.5%. Our Minnesota neighbors provide only 0.7% of South Dakota mentions, a tick fewer than even Montanas make... and Montanans have Yellowstone and the Rockies to distract them. Minnesotans talk about North Dakota twice as much. What gives?
Plug "Minnesota" into the Lexicalist search query, and you find that Minnesotans provide only 35.3% of their own mentions. 13.0% come from North Dakota, and 10.2% come from South Dakota. (I leave it to the Minnesota Department of Tourism to speculate as to what words precede our mentions of our easterly neighbor.) Hmmm... are South Dakotans more self-absorbed than Minnesotans? Mentions of Minnesota are more spread out among other states, suggesting their marketing and top-of-mind-awareness are better than ours... or that they just get more online press thanks to the Twins.
One more random note for the watercooler: The three states that talk about New York the most are New York (12.6% of mentions), New Jersey (5.7%), and North Dakota (4.3%). South Dakota ties with Alaska for talking about New York the least, not even registering on Lexicalist's count. Hmmm....
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