Collective Memory in the Digital Age

We finished our project on Collective Memory in the Digital Age: Understanding “Forgetting” on the Internet last summer, but our last paper just came out on Science Advances last week. The paper, titled “The memory remains: Understanding collective memory in the digital age” presents the results of our study on collective memory patterns based on Wikipedia viewership data of articlesContinue reading “Collective Memory in the Digital Age”

The interplay between extremism and communication in a collaborative project

Collaboration is among the most fundamental social behaviours.  The Internet and particularly the Web have been originally developed to foster large scale collaboration among scientists and technicians. The more recent emergence of Web 2.0 and ubiquity of user-generated content on social web, has provided us with even more potentials and capacities for large scale collaborativeContinue reading “The interplay between extremism and communication in a collaborative project”

Using Twitter data to study politics? Fine, but be careful!

The role of social media in shaping the new politics is undeniable. Therefore the volume of research on this topic, relying on the data that are produced by the same technologies, is ever increasing. And let’s be honest, when we say “social media” data, almost always we mean Twitter data! Twitter is arguably the most studiedContinue reading “Using Twitter data to study politics? Fine, but be careful!”

Even good bots fight and a typology of Internet bots

Our new paper titled “Even good bots fight: The case of Wikipedia” has finally appeared on PLOS One. There are two things that I particularly find worth-highlighting about this work. First, this is the first time that someone looks at an ecosystem of the Internet bots at scale using hard data and tries to come upContinue reading “Even good bots fight and a typology of Internet bots”

The OII Colloquia

I am very happy to announce our new series of seminars at the Oxford Internet Institute (OII), called “The OII Colloquia (TOC)“. The OII Colloquia bring senior speakers from other departments at the University of Oxford to the Oxford Internet Institute to spark conversation around the Internet and society. The word Colloquia (sing.: Colloquium) comes fromContinue reading “The OII Colloquia”

New Paper: Personal Clashes and Status in Wikipedia Edit Wars

Originally posted on HUMANE blog by Milena Tsvetkova. Our study on disagreement in Wikipedia was just published in Scientific Reports (impact factor 5.2). In this study, we find that disagreement and conflict in Wikipedia follow specific patterns. We use complex network methods to identify three kinds of typical negative interactions: an editor confronts another editorContinue reading “New Paper: Personal Clashes and Status in Wikipedia Edit Wars”

Biases in Online Attention; Whose life matters more

This has become a common knowledge that certain lives matter more, when it comes to media coverage and public attention to natural or manmade disasters. Among many papers and articles that report on such biases, my favourite is this one by William C. Adams, titled “Whose Lives Count?”, and dated back to 1986. In this paper, it’sContinue reading “Biases in Online Attention; Whose life matters more”

Understanding voters’ information seeking behaviour

Jonathan and I recently published a paper titled “Wikipedia traffic data and electoral prediction: towards theoretically informed models“ in EPJ Data Science. In this article we examine the possibility of predicting election results by analysing Wikipedia traffic going to different articles related to the parties involved in the election. Unlike similar work in which socially generatedContinue reading “Understanding voters’ information seeking behaviour”

P-values: misunderstood and misused

Since I launched this blog, I always wanted to write something about the dangers of big data! Things that can go wrong easily when you study a large scale transactional data. Obviously, I haven’t done this! But recently we (Bertie, my PhD Student and I) just finished a paper titled: P-values: misunderstood and misused. Of courseContinue reading “P-values: misunderstood and misused”

Wikipedia readership around the UK general election

I already have written about the Wikipedia-Shapps story. So, that is not the main topic of this post! But when that topic was still hot, some people asked me whether I think anyone ever actually reads the Wikipedia articles about politicians? Why should it be important at all what is written in those articles? This post tackles thatContinue reading “Wikipedia readership around the UK general election”

Elections and Social Media Presence of the Candidates

Some have called the forthcoming UK general election a Social Media Election. It might be a bit of exaggeration, but there is no doubt that both candidates and voters are very active on social media these days and take them seriously. The Wikipedia-Shapps story of last week is a good example showing how important online presence is for candidates,Continue reading “Elections and Social Media Presence of the Candidates”

When and Where is Citizen Science happening?

Citizen Science is research undertaken by professional scientists and members of the public collaboratively. The best example of it is Zooniverse. Since it first launched as a single project called Galaxy Zoo in 2007, the Zooniverse has grown into the world’s largest citizen science platform, with more than 25 science projects and over 1 million registeredContinue reading “When and Where is Citizen Science happening?”

Wikipedia sockpuppetry: linking accounts to real people is pure speculation

You must have heard about the recent accusation of Grant Shapps by the Guardian. Basically, the Guardian claims that Shapps has been editing his own Wikipedia page and “Wikipedia has blocked a user account on suspicions that it is being used by the Conservative party chairman, Grant Shapps, or someone acting on his behalf”. In aContinue reading “Wikipedia sockpuppetry: linking accounts to real people is pure speculation”

How Big Data will change our lives and our understanding of them

… If the invention of telescopes provided us with the ability to understand how galaxies behave, and the microscope allowed us to find the cure of such a huge amount of diseases, this century we are going to understand much more about the social systems because of big data. There is no doubt that humans areContinue reading “How Big Data will change our lives and our understanding of them”

Breaking news in a connected world

The bitterness of the tragedy is the same, what has changed is the way that information spreads. I heard about the Boston Marathon Bombing, first when I was preparing to go to bed, and as a recently emerged habit, I was doing my bed-time-Facebook “friend feed” check. The news-line was so shocking that I kept “browsing” forContinue reading “Breaking news in a connected world”

How much Wikipedia could tell us about elections

IMPORTANT NOTE: this post does not aim at predicting the results of any election. This is just a report on some publicly available data and does not draw any conclusion on it.  In few hours, vote casting for Iranian presidential election, 2013 starts. And within few days (may be one or two) the next president of Iran for theContinue reading “How much Wikipedia could tell us about elections”

Wikipedia; modern platform, ancient debates on Land and Gods

What are the most controversial topics in Wikipedia? What articles have been subject to edit wars more than others? We now have a tool to explore what topics are most controversial in different languages and different parts of the world. Wikipedia is great! There is no doubt about it. You may argue that it’s notContinue reading “Wikipedia; modern platform, ancient debates on Land and Gods”

What can Wikipedia tell us about the Cannes Festival just before the closing

Among all the interesting events taking place today, one is the Closing Ceremony of 2013 Cannes Film Festival. If you already have seen our recent paper on Early Prediction of Movie Box Office Success based on Wikipedia Activity Big Data, you already know that I’m a big fan of movies. In that paper we investigated theContinue reading “What can Wikipedia tell us about the Cannes Festival just before the closing”

The coverage of a tragedy

“The Newtown School shooting is a school shooting that occurred on December 14, 2012 in Newtown, Connecticut, Connecticut. 24 persons are reported to have been killed, including 17 children.” This is the whole content of the first revision of Wikipedia article on Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. The tragedy happened at around 9.35 am inContinue reading “The coverage of a tragedy”