I am not sure exactly what form the resource I am looking for may take (I am believing more and more than I am jargon-gated in my search endeavors), but I am looking for something that tracks viral phenomena over time and that maybe also rates their virality levels. 

As an example, such a resource might be a timeline of News stories along with their corresponding "attention index" and for how long / how much the public attended to them. 

I am not looking for something that, for example, is an ordered list of a social media platform's top posts, but rather for something that is a collection of stories / narratives (across social media platforms) experienced by the West or wider humanity. I imagine that such a resource would likely list Monkeypox / Mpox as having fallen out of the public's attention for the most part, and would likely also have Ongoing Conflict in Ukraine as still "in the News" but with a lower "attention index" now than in the past. 

My apologies if there is some standard resource people go to for these things, but I have not been able to find one. Also, thank you for taking the time to read this.

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Apr 25, 2023


My first impulse is AHrefs. It's geared towards SEO so its ratings are estimates of volume over time (in which you can view 'virality' if there is a spike in traffic).

But also, GPT-4 has a good answer for you. Check out the last option, Media Cloud. Actually includes an "Attention Over Time" chart. 


Good Luck!

There isn't a single definitive resource that tracks and rates viral phenomena across various platforms and media. However, there are some resources that might come close to what you're looking for. These tools and websites often analyze and aggregate data from multiple sources to provide insights into trending topics, news stories, and online conversations. Some of these resources include:

Google Trends (trends.google.com): Google Trends allows you to explore search trends over time and by region, comparing different search terms or topics. It doesn't provide an "attention index" directly, but you can use search interest as a proxy for public attention.

NewsWhip (www.newswhip.com): NewsWhip provides insights into how news stories, viral content, and influencers are performing across social media platforms. You can explore trending content and track engagement levels, but access to more in-depth analytics and historical data requires a subscription.

BuzzSumo (www.buzzsumo.com): BuzzSumo is a content analysis and social media monitoring tool that helps identify trending topics, stories, and influencers. It offers engagement metrics and time-based filters, but full functionality requires a subscription.

CrowdTangle (www.crowdtangle.com): CrowdTangle is a social media analytics tool owned by Facebook that tracks content performance across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Reddit. Access is granted to select partners and organizations, but it offers powerful insights into content virality and public attention.

Media Cloud (www.mediacloud.org): Media Cloud is an open-source platform developed by MIT and Harvard that analyzes news and public interest content. You can use it to explore trends in news coverage and attention, but it might require some technical expertise to use effectively.

Remember that these tools are not perfect and may not cover all aspects of virality or attention. They can, however, provide a good starting point to investigate trends and narratives in the public sphere.

Thank you for this comment (sorry this Thank You was delayed; I came back here to add what I've added below, but realize that I hadn't replied to you). 

I came across this today: https://www.newsminimalist.com/

The Homepage:

This is another interesting use case of LLMs, this time for meaningful content sorting and tracking, and is helpful in a way different from how you utilized GPT-4 for my initial question. With some additional modification / development, perhaps LLMs can produce a site with all the features I indicated above, or at least something clo... (read more)


Apr 24, 2023


Google Trends? (example)

I'm, as are most, familiar with Google Trends. What I'm interested is something more analytical than Google Trends. Maybe Google Trends would be closer to what I am imagining if it displayed and detailed how individual trends in aggregate constitute some portion of a larger historical event(s) playing out. For example, that Tucker Carlson is trending now might be a component of multiple other, larger phenomena unfolding. Also, beyond Google Trend's measure of normalized search interest, I would be interested in seeing the actual numbers across social netwo... (read more)