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I spoke at the University of Michigan, School of Information on October 19th, 2010 about “Charting Collections of Connections in Social Media: Mapping and Measuring Social Media Networks to Find Key Positions and Structures“.
I demonstrated the ways social network data sets can be extracted from social media services like Facebook, Twitter, email, YouTube, and flickr. These network graphs can reveal information about the “shape” of the population in terms of the presence of sub-groups and communities within the larger population. In addition, each individual participant is located or positioned within the graph, helping to identify the people who are “core” versus those who are peripheral, as well as those who occupy the position of “bridge” between two otherwise separate groups.
The Yahoo Speaker Series at the School of Information supports distinguished guest lecturers from the fields of information and technology.
2010 Speaker: Marc Smith
VIDEO: Marc Smith
Marc Smith, chief social scientist with the Connected Action Social Group, presented “Charting Collections of Connections in Social Media: Mapping and Measuring Social Media Networks to Find Key Positions and Structures,” on Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2010.
Smith’s talk was sponsored by the Yahoo! Speaker Series, Michigan Interactive & Social Computing, and the School of Information.
In this talk, Smith described how networks are a data structure common across all social media systems — systems defined by enabling populations to author collections of connections. The Social Media Research Foundation‘s NodeXL project makes analysis of social media networks accessible to most users of the Excel spreadsheet application. Using NodeXL, networks become as easy to create and analyze as pie charts. Applying the tool to a range of social media networks has already revealed the variations present in online social spaces. A review of the tool and images of Twitter, Flickr, YouTube, and e-mail networks will be presented, illustrating different patterns created when communities, brands, and controversies are discussed.