An application that uses the Yammer API to extract historical messages for an organisation and save them for later academic analysis.
A research group within ISOM was interested in researching social media, particularly as used by organisations. Yammer is an extremely popular corporate microblogging and social network tool (like twitter but within an organisation, and is used by a number of companies in New Zealand, including the University of Auckland.
The group was interested in both qualitative (why? what use is it? how is it used? how does it help/hurt?) and quantitative (how many? how often? when? what about?) questions. This tool was designed to help answer the quantitative questions.
Yammer has a REST based API that developers can use to get access to Yammer data. It requires authorisation from a user, and is restricted to accessing only the data that user has access to. It also has rate-limits, governing how often a request can be made. There were a few items of data that were surfaced on the Yammer site that were not available through the API, and for those we used screen-scraping to extract them.
This application was used to extract data about The University of Auckland's Yammer network, and that preliminary data was used as the basis of two academic papers.