Social Media Research Toolkit

The Social Media Research Toolkit is a list of 50+ social media research tools curated by researchers at the Social Media Lab at Ted Rogers School of Management, Ryerson University.  The kit features tools that have been used in peer-reviewed academic studies. Many tools are free to use and require little or no programming. Some are simple data collectors such as tweepy, a Python library for collecting tweets and others are a bit more robust such as Netlytic, a multi-platform (Twitter, YouTube, RSS Feed, or text/csv file) data collector and analyzer, developed by our lab. All of the tools are confirmed available and operational.

(*Newly added 2021)

Num. of CitationsNameDescriptionCoding Req?PlatformsTool TypeAnalysis TypeMisc. FeaturesExportPricingSystem Req.
24700GephiGephi is the leading visualization and exploration software for all kinds of graphs and networks. Gephi is open-source and free.XN/A (Must import datasets)Analysis + VisualizationNetwork DiscoveryExploratory Data Analysis, Link Analysis and Biological Network analysis.CSVFreeWindows, Mac OS X and Linux.
On Windows Java 7 or 8 is required
Hardware requirements: 500 MHz CPU + 128 MB RAM + OpenGL 1.2
16700HootsuiteEnhance your social media management with Hootsuite, the leading social media dashboard.XInstagram, Youtube, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, PinterestData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationN/AReal-time Analysis, Performance Analysis (Follower Growth, Followers Report).PCSV, .PDFFree + PayWeb Accessible
7440NodeXLNodeXL is a free, open-source template for Microsoft® Excel® 2007 and 2010 that makes it easy to explore network graphs. With NodeXL, you can enter a network edge list in a worksheet, click a button and see your graph, all in the familiar environment of the Excel window.XTwitter, Youtube, Flickr, VimeoAnalysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery
+ Text Analysis
N/AGraphML, Pajek, UCINet, and matrix formats.JPG, .PNG, .EPS, etc.FreeWindows XP, Vista, 7 or 8; Office 2007 or 2010 or 2013
3000Brandwatch / Crimson HexagonGet deep insights into consumer opinion on any topic from across the social web.XVideo, Twitter, Facebook, Blogger, Forum, Download, ReviewData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisDemographics, Trends Detection, Geo-Location Analysis, Marketing Measurements, Competitor AnalysisExcel, .CSV, .JPG, .PNGPayWeb Accessible
2610TweepyAn easy-to-use Python library for accessing the Twitter API.PythonTwitterData CollectionN/AN/AUnknownFreePython 2.6 and 2.7, 3.3, 3.4 & 3.5
2070Meltwater Social (Sysomos)Offering a comprehensive set of solutions that support the full spectrum of your advanced social analytics and management needs.XTwitter, Blogger, Forum, Wikipedia, Video, DownloadData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork DiscoveryBrand/Trend AnalysisExcel CSV, PDF and JPEGs.PayWeb Accessible
1370Developer (Gnip)Gnip is Twitter’s enterprise API platform, delivering real-time and historical social data to power your business.XTwitterData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisContent AnalysisJSON, .CSVPayWeb Accessible
940TwitonomyBrowse, search, filter and get insights on the people you follow and those who follow you.XTwitterData Collection + Analysis+ VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text Analysis.CSV, .PDFFree + PayWeb Accessible
857TAGSGoogle Sheet template which lets you setup and run automated collection of search results from TwitterXTwitterData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeN/A
834DatasiftAnalyze trends and topics from the world’s largest source of public opinion.XBitly, Blogs, Boards, DailyMotion, Disqus, Facebook, IMBd, Intense Debate, LexisNexis, NewsCred, Reddit, Topix, Tumblr, Videos, Wikipedia, Wordpress, YouTubeData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationText AnalysisContext Analysis, Sentiment Analysis.CSV, JSONPayWeb Accessible
708IssuecrawlerThe IssueCrawler is web network location and visualization software.XInternetData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork DiscoveryCo-link Analysis, Snowball Analysis, Inter-actor Analysis.XML, Raw DataUnknown
689NetlyticNetlytic is a cloud-based text and social networks analyzer that can automatically summarize and discover social networks from online conversations on social media sites.XTwitter, YouTube, RSS Feed, or text/csv fileData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisGeo-Location Analysis, Category (Topical) Analysis.CSV,Pajek, .PNG, UCINETFree + PayWeb Accessible
520DigmindSocial media analytics for businesses.XTwitter, Facebook, Youtube, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Blogger, Forum, ReviewData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork DiscoveryCompetitor Analysis Analysis, Trend Analysis, Real-time Analysis, Intelligence Crawlers.PDF, .PPT, .XLS, .JPGPayWeb Accessible
516FacepagerFacepager was designed for fetching public available data from Twitter and other JSON-based API.XTwitterData CollectionN/AN/A.CSVFreeWindows and Mac OS X
479AudienseUtilise social data to understand the audiences that matter most.We empower organisations to intelligently engage individuals at an unprecedented scaleXFacebook, Instagram, TwitterData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisIdentify audience, gain insights (demographics, interests, online habits, purchase behaviour, media consumption, influencers).PDF, .PPT, .CSV, .XLSPayN/A
474DiscoverTextDiscoverText is a cloud-based,
collaborative text analytics solution. With dozens of powerful text mining features, the DiscoverText software _x0003_solution provides tools to quickly and accurately make better decisions.
XTwitter, Blogger, Disqus, EmailData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationText AnalysisN/AUnknownFree + PayWeb Accessible
435CrowdtangleCrowdTangle is the leading content discovery and social monitoring platform for publishers and brands.XFacebook, Instagram, RedditData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text analysisReal-time dashboards, custom notifications, big screen visualizationsN/APayWeb Accessible
402Webometric AnalystWebometric Analyst analyses the web impact of documents or web sites and creates network diagrams of collections of web sites, as well as creating networks and time series analysis of social web sites (e.g., YouTube, Twitter) and some specialist web sites (e.g., Google Books, Mendeley). It automatically submits queries to search engines and other sites and process the results.XTwitter, Youtube, FlickrData Collection + AnalysisNetwork DiscoveryN/APajekFreeWindows only
317yourTwapperKeeperSimple, easy way to archive data from Twitter directly on your serverXTwitterData CollectionNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisN/AHTML, RSS, EXCEL, and JSONFreeVirtual server with an IP address running APACHE / PHP / MYSQL
283Python-twitterA Python wrapper around the Twitter API.PythonTwitterData CollectionN/AN/AUnknownFreePython versions from 2.7+ and Python 3.
268TwythonTwython is the premier Python library providing an easy (and up-to-date) way to access Twitter data.PythonTwitterData CollectionN/AN/AUnknownFreePython 2.6+ and Python 3
257InfoextractorA framework to extract relevant information from various sources such as blogs, YouTube, and TwitterXYoutube, Wikipedia, BlogCatalogData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/A.CVS, TEXT, .XMLFreeWeb Accessible
230Twitter Advanced Search*Twitter Advanced search using key words, phrases and hashtags.XTwitterData SearchNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
222DMI-TCATDMI-TCAT allows one to retrieve and collect tweets from Twitter and to analyze them in various waysXTwitterData collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisReproducible data capture + analysis.CSV, .GEXFFreeDebian, Ubuntu
204Tweet ArchivistTweet Archivist collects data directly from Twitter based on the user’s search terms. The user can also use this tool analyze the data to show information such as top users, words, URLs, hashtags, and more. Finally, users can download the dataset as either an Excel or PDF file.XTwitterData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationN/A.CSV, .PDFPayWeb Accessible
189StreamRThis package provides a series of functions that allow R users to access Twitter's filter, sample, and user streams, and to parse the output into data frames.RTwitterData CollectionN/AN/A.TXTFreeUnknown
182MozdehA free Windows program for keyword, time series, sentiment, gender and content analyses of tweets.XTwitterData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisDemographic Analysis, Time-Series Analysis, Content Analysis, Trend Detection.TXTFreeWindows (Desktop advisable)
152OutWit HubOutWit Hub explores the depths of the Web for you, automatically collecting and organizing data and media from online sources.XInternet SourcesData CollectionN/AN/A.CSV, .TXT, .HTML, Excel or SQL databasesPayFirefox
150Social Feed ManagerSocial Feed Manager is open source software for libraries, archives, cultural heritage institutions and research organizations. It empowers those communities’ researchers, faculty, students, and archivists to define and create collections of data from social media platforms. Social Feed Manager will harvest from Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr, and Sina Weibo and is extensible for other platforms. In addition to collecting data from those platforms’ APIs, it will collect linked web pages and media.XTwitter, Flickr, Sina WeiboData CollectionN/ACan also collect related web resources. Supports multiple users..CSV, Excel, .JSONFree (open source)Ubuntu 12.04 LTS server
139YouTube Data ToolsThis is a collection of simple tools for extracting data from the YouTube platform via the YouTube API v3.XYoutubeData CollectionN/AN/A.GDF, .TSVFreeWeb Accessible
128TwurlTwurl is like curl, but tailored specifically for the Twitter API.RubyGemsTwitterData CollectionN/AN/AUnknownFreeUnknown
106Foller.meFoller.me is a Twitter analytics application that gives you rich insights about any public Twitter profile. We gather near real-time data about topics, mentions, hashtags, followers, location and more!XTwitterData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationText AnalysisTweet StatisticsxFreeWeb Accessible
95VtrackerThe most complete tool for monitoring social networksXTwitterData Collection + AnalysisNetwork DiscoveryMonitoring (Brand/Competitor Analysis)UnknownPayWeb Accessible
87TextextureTextexture visualizes any text as a network and enables the user to use this interactive visualization to read through the text in a non-linear fashion. Using the network one can see the most relevant topics inside the text organized as distinctively colored clusters of nodes, their relationship to one another, and the most influential words inside the text, responsible for topic shifts. This way the user can navigate right into the topic of the text that is the most relevant to them and use the bigger (more influential) nodes to shift into another subject.XYoutube, TextData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisN/A.GEFXFreeWeb Accessible
86Twarctwarc is a command line tool and Python library for archiving Twitter JSON dataPythonTwitterData CollectionN/AN/AJSONFreePython 2 or 3
79Nvivo/Ncapturea place to organize, store and retrieve your data so you can work more efficiently, save time and rigorously back up findings with evidenceXN/AData analysis + VisualizationText analysisN/A.DOCX, .XLSL, .QDCPayWindows, Mac
76ChorusChorus is a free, evolving, data harvesting and visual analytics suite designed to facilitate and enable social science research using Twitter data.XTwitterData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisN/AExcelFreeWindows only
71Visibrain FocusVisibrain is a media monitoring tool for PR and communications professionals, used for reputation management, PR crisis prevention, and detecting influencers and trends. Visibrain’s unique techxlogy brings together online press, blogs and social media, capturing all online activity around a brand, in real time, xise free.XTwitterData Collection + Analysis+ VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisCrisis Prevention and Management, Brand Analysis, Competitor AnalysisUnknownPayWeb Accessible
68SociovizSocioViz is a social media analytics platform powered by Social Network Analysis metrics.XTwitterData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork DiscoveryN/A.GDFFreeWeb Accessible
66Twitter Audit*A tool used to check how many of your Twitter followers are real.XTwitterData SearchNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
56HosebirdA Java HTTP client for consuming Twitter's Streaming APIJavaTwitterData CollectionN/AN/AxFreeUnknown
54VOSON/UberlinkVOSON is a web application built from the ground up for the collection and analysis of hyperlink network data. VOSON allows the user to perform web mining, text analysis, dataset manipulation and visualisation, and social network analysis (SNA) within an integrated environment.XTwitter, RedditData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisWeb Mining.CSV,GraphML, PajekFree + PayFirefox, Chrome and Safari (including mobile Safari on the iPad)
53TrendsmapTwitter trending hashtags and topics from anywhere in the world; Analyse and visualise any topic, hashtag, word, user, or tweet in detail.XTwitterData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text analysisInteractive map, tweet selection controls, detailed stats, detailed account analyticsN/APayN/A
47Info ExtractorExtracts relevant information such as title, tags, comments and view count from various sources like blogs, YouTube, and Wikipedia in a format that is easily exported.XYoutube, Wikipedia, Blogger, Huffington PostData CollectionN/AN/A.CSV, Text, .XMLFreeWeb Accessible
46One Million Tweet Map*Tweet map per locations up to 6 hours old, with a keyword search option.XTwitterData Search + AnalyticsNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
43Twint*An advanced Twitter scraping & OSINT tool written in Python that doesn't use Twitter's API, allowing you to scrape a user's followers, following, Tweets and morePythonTwitterData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
37Social Bearing*Insights & analytics
for tweets & timelines
XTwitterData Collection + AnalysisNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
29AffinioAffinio is the marketing intelligence platform that is changing the way you relate to your consumers.XTwitter, PinterestData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork DiscoveryContent Analysis, Competitor Analysis.CSVPayWeb Accessible
28Amnesty YouTube Dataviewer*Extract Youtube Metadata- Reverse image (video still) search and exact uploading time. Here’s an Advanced
Guide on Verifying Video Content.
XYoutubeData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
26Gravatar*Your Gravatar is an image and public profile that follows you from site to site appearing beside your name when you do things like comment or post on a blog. Avatars help identify your posts on blogs and web forums, so why not on any site?XBlogsData SearchNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
26Telegram Analytics (tgstat) *Search open Telegram messagesXTelegramData SearchNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
25iScience MapsiScience Maps is a free Web service for scientists interested in using Twitter content in their research. This service allows one to assess the effects of specific events (e.g. a natural catastrophe or a political election) as they are voiced on Twitter. For example, make comparisons between cities, regions or countries for terms or combinations of terms and monitor their evolution in the course of an event.XTwitterData Collection + Analysis + VisualizationN/AGeo-Location Analysis.CSV, .XLSFreeWeb Accessible
24EchosecHelping Companies Identify Threats from Social Media And Darknet DataXN/AData collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisAccess to raw content within search parameters, 24/7 monitoring / notifications, up to date visualizationN/APayN/A
20InVID*The InVID innovation action develops a knowledge verification platform to detect emerging stories and assess the reliability of newsworthy video files and content spread via social media.XTwitter, Instagram, FacebookData Search + Verification + AnalysisNetwork Discovery + Content AnalysisN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
19Digitalfootprintscollect closed Facebook data with user consent; retrieve data from selected profiles, view stats and search for specific data / content, sort and filter contentXFacebookData Collection + AnalysisNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
19Pulsar SocialPulsar helps you find the story in the data by bringing all your digital audiences into one place and leveraging the power of AI and data visualizationXTwitter, Facebook, Youtube, InstagramData collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Text AnalysisLongitudinal data, Unlimited channels, Native analytics, audience insights, content performanceN/APayN/A
16TwecollTwitter command-line tool written in Python, can be used to retrieve data from Twitter and purge likes (its only data-altering feature)PythonTwitterData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreePython 2.7+
9Webometricsprogram for altmetrics, citation analysis, social web analysis and webometrics, including link analysisXYoutube, Twitter, FlickrData Collection + AnalysisNetwork discovery + Text AnalysisN/AN/AFreeWindows
8Facebook Video Downloader*Download Facebook Videos OnlineXFacebookData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
6TwitterGogglesThis project is built for the Twitter Search API version 1.1PythonTwitterData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreePython 3.3
6TwitterGooglesA Python 3.3 adaptation of the PHP program "Twitter Zombie", originally developed for the Twitter Search API version 1.0.PythonTwitterData CollectionN/AN/AJSONFreePython 3.3
5Botometer (BotOrNot)*Botometer (formerly BotOrNot) checks the activity of a Twitter account and gives it a score. Higher scores mean more bot-like activity.XTwitterData SearchNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
5Twlets*The easiest way to download Twitter data. Get anyone's tweets, followers, likes, videos, and more into Excel.XTwitterData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AExcelFreeWeb Accessible
4Instaloader*Download pictures (or videos) along with their captions and other metadata from Instagram.PythonInstagramData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
4NaoyunNaoyun helps to vizualize live twitter activity. Naoyun is a software that create a bridge between Twitter and Gephi with their own Stream API.XTwitterData Collection + AnalysisNetwork DiscoveryUnknownFree
4Removeddit*Display removed (by mods) and deleted (by users) comments/threads from Reddit.XRedditData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
4tStreamingArchivertStreamingArchiver is a set of programs for archiving Tweets using the Twitter API and moving them into a mySQL database.JavaTwitterData CollectionN/AN/A.TXTFreeUnknown
4Who posted what?*whopostedwhat.com is a non public Facebook keyword search for people who work in the public interest.XFacebookData SearchNetwork DiscoveryAccess to raw content within search parametersN/AFreeWeb Accessible
3Youtube Geo-Search Tool*Location-based search on YouTubeXYoutubeData SearchNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
2Communalytic*Communalytic is a Research Tool For Studying Online Discourse.Communalytic can collect, analyze and visualize data from various social media platforms and can automatically identify toxic and anti-social interactions, map shared interests and detect signs of possible coordination among seemingly disparate actors in online discourse.XReddit, Twitter, Instagram & Facebook (via CrowdTangle)Data Collection + Analysis + VisualizationNetwork Discovery + Toxicity analysis.CSV, .GraphMLFree + PayWeb Accessible
2Search is Back*Search is BackXFacebookData SearchNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
2T*A command-line power tool for Twitter.RubyTwitterData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/A.CSVFreeWeb Accessible
2Twitter Video Downloader*Download twitter videos & GIF from tweetsXTwitterData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
2Youtube Geofind*YouTube Geofind; three different search functions, location, topic, and channel.XYoutubeData SearchNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
2Youtube-dl*youtube-dl is a command-line program to download videos from YouTube.com and a few more sites.PythonYoutubeData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
1New Fb Search*Facebook Search ToolXFacebookData SearchNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
1Reddit Investigator*Reddit Investigator works just by collecting the data that reddit makes available and elaborates it to obtain some new useful infos.XRedditData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
1Skopenow*The quick and intelligent solution for open source and social media investigations.XFacebook, TwitterData SearchNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/APayWeb Accessible
1SteamID *steamid.uk is a service where you can easily find steam profiles and information on this account.XSteamData SearchNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
1Story Saver*Download Instagram Stories, Highlights and Videos
Online Easily with one simple click.
XInstagramData CollectionNetwork DiscoveryN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
1Treeverse*Treeverse is a tool for visualizing and navigating Twitter conversation threads.XTwitterData Visualization + NavigationText AnalysisN/AN/AFreeWeb Accessible
1Twitter Stream DownloaderA simple Python script to download tweets from the Twitter streaming API.PythonTwitter, LinkedInData CollectionN/AN/AUnknownFreeTweepy