APSIPA Transactions on Signal and Information Processing > Vol 10 > Issue 1

Analyzing public opinion on COVID-19 through different perspectives and stages

Yuqi Gao, University of Rochester, USA, ygao65@UR.Rochester.edu , Hang Hua, University of Rochester, USA, Jiebo Luo, University of Rochester, USA
 
Suggested Citation
Yuqi Gao, Hang Hua and Jiebo Luo (2021), "Analyzing public opinion on COVID-19 through different perspectives and stages", APSIPA Transactions on Signal and Information Processing: Vol. 10: No. 1, e8. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/ATSIP.2021.5

Publication Date: 17 Mar 2021
© 2021 Yuqi Gao, Hang Hua and Jiebo Luo
 
Subjects
 
Keywords
Data analysisCOVID-19Sentiment trackingPublic opinion
 

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This is published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence.

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In this article:
I. INTRODUCTION 
II. RELATED WORK 
III. DATA AND METHODOLOGY 
IV. EMPIRICAL RESULTS 
V. SPECIFIC TOPICS 
VI. CONCLUSION 

Abstract

In recent months, COVID-19 has become a global pandemic and had a huge impact on the world. People under different conditions have very different attitudes toward the epidemic. Due to the real-time and large-scale nature of social media, we can continuously obtain a massive amount of public opinion information related to the epidemic from social media. In particular, researchers may ask questions such as “how is the public reacting to COVID-19 in China during different stages of the pandemic?”, “what factors affect the public opinion orientation in China?”, and so on. To answer such questions, we analyze the pandemic-related public opinion information on Weibo, China's largest social media platform. Specifically, we have first collected a large amount of COVID-19-related public opinion microblogs. We then use a sentiment classifier to recognize and analyze different groups of users’ opinions. In the collected sentiment-orientated microblogs, we try to track the public opinion through different stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Furthermore, we analyze more key factors that might have an impact on the public opinion of COVID-19 (e.g. users in different provinces or users with different education levels). Empirical results show that the public opinions vary along with the key factors of COVID-19. Furthermore, we analyze the public attitudes on different public-concerning topics, such as staying at home and quarantine. In summary, we uncover interesting patterns of users and events as an insight into the world through the lens of a major crisis.

DOI:10.1017/ATSIP.2021.5