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What’s the Happiest State in America (According to Twitter)?

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Do you need to be cheered up? There’s one place in the US that can turn that frown upside down faster than any other.

Hawaii has been named the happiest state in the country. Yes, it’s always sunny. Yes, beaches abound and, yes, you can actually attend a luau with alarming frequency. Those factors may or may not have to do anything with the findings of a University of Vermont study which tried to gauge the happiest states based on tweets.

The researchers looked at 10 million geotagged tweets in 2011, plucking out words associated with happiness and unhappiness. Then, they considered other data about income, weight and other factors. And quicker than you can say “aloha,” Hawaii checked in on top, although it’s hardly scientific, since a lot of people in the state are probably on vacation and happy when they tweet.

Another factor which suggests you shouldn’t take this study too seriously is that people ages 18-29 tweet a lot more than the rest of the population, which skews the results. It’s also important to remember 15% of adults who go online actually tweet, meaning the other 85% could be out having the time of their lives and no one realizes it.

The study also found that the happier states tweeted a lot about food, while the unhappiest ones tended to use curse words.

As far as cities, Napa, California rated number one. Guess all that wine people are drinking is making them feel pretty chipper. Beaumont, Texas is the unhappiest.

HAPPIEST STATES BY TWEETS

1. Hawaii
2. Maine
3. Nevada
4. Utah
5. Vermont

UNHAPPIEST STATES BY TWEETS

1. Louisiana
2. Mississippi
3. Maryland
4. Delaware
5. Georgia

HAPPIEST CITIES BY TWEETS

1. Napa, California
2. Longmont, California
3. San Clemente, California
4. Santa Fe, New Mexico
5. Santa Cruz, California

UNHAPPIEST CITIES BY TWEETS

1. Beaumont, Texas
2. Albany, Georgia
3. Texas City, Texas
4. Shreveport, Louisiana
5. Monroe, Louisiana

[The Atlantic]

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