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presidential word clouds 2010

March 18th, 2010 9 comments

Methodology is the same as the VP Internal word clouds, with no words deleted but with folding some words into one.

The input text was copy-pasted from their websites on March 18.  If someone knows where to find Debogorski’s platform, please let me know as I was unsuccessful.  The total words including even common stop words is Bailey: 1159; Saulnier: 3971.  A word of caution – Bailey offers about 70% less text content than Saulnier, and word clouds are better with MORE text, so there may be impaired accuracy.

Neil Bailey

Chris Saulnier

As usual, some thoughts on these word clouds only unless otherwise specified.

  • The obvious: Bailey’s cloud is dominated by “sustainability” and “community“.   It is also a major word for Saulnier, though in a more balanced fashion.
  • Saulnier was the only candidate to have both Sexton and Carleton appear in his word cloud, though he spelled Carleton incorrectly.  IDE seen that before but couldn’t remember where.
  • Bailey’s name appears twice in his word cloud as both Neil’s and Neil, which would indicate his platform is at least partially written in third person, which is unusual.  A reincarnation of Bob Dole, perhaps?
  • I was amused to see website make an appearance consistently, unlike the VP Internal clouds.
  • The president is the Chief Executive Officer of the Union.  Can you tell that from the word clouds?  Saulnier has words related to that concept: “executive”, “leadership”, “staff”, “council”, and possibly “meetings”, “office” (though those are boring).  Bailey had fewer – perhaps “policy” and “vision”, arguably “community”.
  • I was surprised to see vague words in Bailey’s word cloud: “many”, “much”. I teach classes on how to write precisely and be specific, and these words will earn you big red marks on your paper.
  • Looking at the action words,
    • Bailey: need, change, make, develop.  Together with words like “issue” and “problem”, this indicates a high level of dissatisfaction with the DSU and a desire to implement change.
    • Saulnier: “new”, “create” indicate innovation, tempered by the word “ensure” which tends to indicate the continuation or execution of an existing idea, though “better” could indicate the desire to improve on the status quo.  ”work” and “provide” are also present.
  • I like the presence of “goal” in Saulnier’s word cloud, but was surprised by “order“.  It turns out that is due to his inordinate love of the phrase “in order to”.
  • I was puzzled to see “decline” and “growth” both in Bailey’s word cloud, with roughly the same weight.

Any other observations?  Weigh in below.

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