As an experiment investigating social media as a data source for making management decisions, photo sharing websites were searched for data on deer sightings. Data about deer density and location are important factors in decisions related to herd management and transportation safety, but such data are often limited or not available. Results indicate that when combined with simple rules, data from photo sharing websites reliably predicted the location of road segments with high risk for deer-vehicle collisions as reported by volunteers to an internet site tracking roadkill. Use of Google Maps as the GIS platform was helpful in plotting and sharing data, measuring road segments and other distances, and overlaying geographical data. The ability to view satellite images and panoramic street views proved to be a particularly useful. As a general conclusion, the two independently collected sets of data from social media provided consistent information, suggesting investigative value to this data source. Overlaying two independently collected data sets can be a useful step in evaluating or mitigating reporting bias and human error in data taken from social media.
- Deer Vehicle Collisions,
- Geographic Information Systems,
- Social Media,
- Validating Data,
- Deer Density,
- Deer Location
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/kent_webb/27/