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This vs. that: Two topics go head-to-head each day

CNN found thousands of Facebook mentions of "get high" and "get drunk" over a few hours on a Friday night, a couple of months ago. We decided to take another look at the same numbers on January 17, as news broke about President Barack Obama's comments about <a href='http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2014/01/19/obama-says-marijuana-no-more-dangerous-than-alcohol/'>weed being "no more dangerous" than alcohol</a>. Alcohol is still mentioned more, but it looks like the gap between the substances is a little smaller. You can see the January 17 numbers here. The November 8 results are on the next frame. CNN found thousands of Facebook mentions of "get high" and "get drunk" over a few hours on a Friday night, a couple of months ago. We decided to take another look at the same numbers on January 17, as news broke about President Barack Obama's comments about weed being "no more dangerous" than alcohol. Alcohol is still mentioned more, but it looks like the gap between the substances is a little smaller. You can see the January 17 numbers here. The November 8 results are on the next frame.
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This vs. that: January 20 - Friday night, again
This vs. that - November 9: Friday night, then
This vs. that: January 20 - Friday night, again
This vs. that: November 9 - Friday night, then
This vs. that: January 16 - Three newsmakers
This vs. that: January 12 - Golden Globes
This vs. that: December 19 - 'Duck Dynasty'
This vs. that: December 16 - Spotted what?
This vs. that: December 13 - Affluenza
This vs. that: November 21 - Cocaine
This vs. that - November 20: Taking flight
This vs. that - November 19: Keeping score
This vs. that: November 15 - Go BatKid!
This vs. that: November 14 - Warren, Clinton
This vs. that: November 13 - Sweater weather
This vs. that: November 12 - Turner Field
This vs. that: November 12 - Sub/urban
This vs. that: November 11 - Veterans Day
This vs. that: November 11 - Symbolism
This vs. that: November 9 - Pot and booze
This vs. that: November 8 - 'Thor'
This vs. that: November 7 - Video versus
This vs. that: November 7 - Rewind
This vs. that: November 6 - Stars realign?
This vs. that: November 5 - Election 2013
This vs. that: November 4 - Off to the polls?
This vs. that: November 1 - Hairy numbers
This vs. that: October 31 - Candy corn
This vs. that: October 31 - Busy day
This vs. that: October 31 - World Series
This vs. that: October 30 - Wine shortage?
This vs. that: October 30 - Reed, Brown
This vs. that: October 29 - Meme-agerie
This vs. that: October 28 - Getting political
This vs. that: October 28 - Lou Reed
This vs. that: October 25 - Clinton, Palin
This vs. that: October 22 - Proud papas
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STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • What are people talking about? Facebook mentions give a glimpse
  • CNN now has ability to see how often some topics are mentioned
  • Data is broad and shows demographics, rather than specific conversations

Editor's note: This vs. that is a rotating feature that includes new head-to-head topics each day. Click through the gallery to see the archived charts.

(CNN) -- People talk about all kinds of things on social media: Their day-to-day lives, articles generating a lot of buzz and the things they ate for breakfast.

Some of the conversations by Facebook's 128 million daily users revolve around the news, and CNN now has the ability to take a peek into this world.

Data details get drunk vs. get high

Facebook has given CNN access to demographic data that tells us how many people have mentioned a topic along with age, gender and location information. We aren't actually reading through conversations, but rather looking at numbers that show us trends.

Facebook trending down with teens

Since we've just gotten this information, we thought we'd try something new. Each day, we'll be comparing two topics that show interesting trends in their demographic data.

Click through to see which snippets of the Gettysburg Address are most-mentioned on Facebook. Click through to see which snippets of the Gettysburg Address are most-mentioned on Facebook.
Gettysburg Address as Facebook status
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View graphic frame-by-frame View graphic frame-by-frame

You might see that more women are talking about a particular topic than men, or that younger age groups are mentioning one news event versus another. While this isn't a scientific study, we hope pitting two topics against each other will give some perspective on these results.

Sometimes, these numbers can show us things we don't expect. For example, we recently learned that many of the Facebook users talking about Iran were young people, especially internationally.

We also found a similar trend in ages among the people talking about the government shutdown. Looking at Facebook mentions can give us insights that would be hard to get in any other way.

Check back here to see new charts about topics in the news and popular conversation, and if you have ideas you want us to look into, let us know in the comments below.

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