March 19, 2014

Data Scientist Reveals How Information Spreads on Facebook

How Information Spreads

Information spreads fast on Facebook. We see that many social networks such as Facebook and Twitter have a resharing feature. The resharing or re-posting functionality allows users to share other people’s content with friends or followers. As social networkers, we re-share content from user to user. When we do, large cascades of reshares can form. Facebook scans and collects everything posted by each of your friends, everyone you follow, each group you belong to, and every Facebook page you’ve liked. It begs the question—why do some pieces of content go viral while others don’t? Why are some things shared more often than others? Lada Adamic will reveal how Facebook reshares cascades are formed, and she’ll discuss how they can be predicted based on things such as the content type, author, and diffusion structure.

About the Speaker

Lada Adamic is an American network scientist, who researches information dynamics in networks. She studies how network structure influences the flow of information, how information affects the evolution of networks and crowdsourced knowledge sharing.

Adamic is an associate professor at the University of Michigan. During her sabbatical year, she worked at Facebook with the data science team. Previously she worked in Hewlett-Packard‘s Information Dynamics Lab on research projects relating to networks constructed from large data sets.

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