Grade reading levels of Florida political tweets, uncovered

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How smart are your tweets? TIME Magazine thinks it knows. The magazine evaluated 1 million public tweets and found that about 33 percent test at a fourth grade reading level.

TIME used the commonly used reading comprehension survey called SMOG (Smile Measure of Gobbledygook) to analyze the complexity of messages. Gobbledygook is defined as a word that involves three or more syllables. Apparently, politicians are the most likely to use gobbledygook.

You can enter any Twitter handle into their search box and find out where the tweeter falls on the curve. For example, President Barack Obama and Speaker John Boehner tweet at a 7th grade reading level; and Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton at a 6th grade reading level.

Here are where some high profile Florida politicians land:

At an 8th grade reading level: Steve Southerland; at a 7th grade reading level: Marco Rubio, Bill Nelson, Ander Crenshaw, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and Nan Rich; at a 6th grade reading level: Ted Yoho, Charlie Crist, and Rick Scott; and at a 5th grade reading level: Gwen Graham. This may make the Southerland-Graham match one of the more unequal on this spectrum.

Plug in any others of your curiosity here.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.