Researchers at The University of Manchester have identified Doncaster as being the most positive city in the UK about Christmas, whilst Oxford is the most negative.

Marco Smolla and Jamie Soul, from the Faculty of Life Sciences, captured and analysed 3 million tweets with the word Christmas or Xmas in to listen in on what the nation is saying about the festive season.

Some of the most common words that came up were love, shopping, decorations, presents and Santa. But there were also some more unexpected ones, such as harrystyles and ill.

The pair then scored the tweets as happy or sad based on the words in the text and ranked cities.

The top 5 most negative were:

1. Oxford (12.9% of tweets were negative)
2. Southampton (12.6%)
3. Newcastle upon Tyne (11.3%)
4. Birmingham (11.2%)
5. Liverpool (11.1%)

The top 5 most positive were:

1. Doncaster (70.3% of tweets were positive)
2. Dukinfield (55.7%)
3. Sunderland (54.2%)
4. Nottingham (52.8%)
5. Leeds (51.2%)

Examples of some of the negative tweets include:

“Absolute Heartbreak! To lose is one thing but to lose it in the 90th min from a counter attack is an absolute disgrace! Christmas ruined!” said a Twitter user in Scarborough.

“X Factor is Christmas number one…blah blah blah music is dead and Christmas number 1 is meaningless now etc etc etc.” said another person in Huddersfield.

Jamie says: “Whilst we had great fun carrying out this exercise the results help to illustrate the use of bioinformatics techniques for analysing complex, big data. These skills are used every day by thousands of researchers to help understand human disease.”

Marco adds: “The programming language that we use is helping researchers around the world to make sense of the immense amount of data that has been collected over the past few years. Statistical analysis is now an important part in our fight against disease.”


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