As seen on ResearchLive: Why ‘function words’ matter

Research by Tom De Ruyck and Stephan Ludwig finds that shared ‘function word’ usage among MROC members is correlated to the amount of community activity. In mining online text-based conversations for insights, the market research industry has been primarily concerned with what people say rather than how they say it. The focus of text analytics tools has been on extracting content words – verbs, adjectives, nouns and adverbs – to meet the requirement of companies to know what is being said about their brands, products and services and the sentiments being expressed. But in doing so, we ignore the function words (prepositions, pronouns) which contour how people express their ideas and views. While there are only roughly 500 function words in the English language, they make up 55% of our daily word usage. Check out Tom & Stephan’s blogpost at ResearchLive!

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