Scottish Referendum Sentiment Analysis

As referenced earlier in the week, we have carried out a sentiment analysis, combining what we see in the social media from specific parts of Scotland to determine the likely outcome of the referendum.

HEALTH WARNING: This is not a perfected science – yet! This is a trial.

What we have done is run the sentiment through our bespoke software tool, and add expert analysis based on past, similar events. That is even trickier than it was in May in Northern Ireland, where we were roughly as close to the outcome of European and Local Elections as reputable posters and bookies. So we cannot emphasise enough that these outcomes are to be treated with caution – we publish them just to test what we have with the actual results, due over the coming 10-12 hours.

Our sentiment analysis shows:

1. Dundee has returned the highest “Yes” vote (excluding Clackmannanshire and the islands, which are too small to be sure). 

2. Dundee, Clackmannanshire, Angus, West Dunbartonshire and most notably Glasgow have returned a majority “Yes” vote. 

3. North Ayrshire, Falkirk, Moray, Perth/Kinross and West Lothian are too close to call. 

4. 20 remaining mainland Councils have returned a majority “No” vote (all on the mainland plus Orkney; we assume so has Shetland, but not Na h-Eileanan Siar). 

5. Scottish Borders has probably returned the highest “No” vote, although it is very closely followed by Dumfries/Galloway (excluding the Islands, which are too small to be sure).

6. The overall “Yes” vote is around 43%

Not least given that our figure is well out of line with the polls, let us repeat the Health Warning! This is one way of doing it; polling is another; research (of the type used by bookmakers) is another. Ours is an innovation still itself being researched, analysed and tested.

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