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Category Archives: Social Media

Another Facebook Experiment on Users is Revealed to Focus on Voting

Micah L. Sifry – Mother Jones: “On Election Day, political campaigns, candidates, consultants, and pollsters pay close attention to who votes and why—and so does Facebook. For the past six years, on every national Election Day, the social-networking behemoth has pushed out a tool—a high-profile button that proclaims “I’m Voting” or “I’m a Voter”—designed to encourage Facebook users to vote. Now, Facebook says it has finished fine-tuning the tool, and if all goes according to plan, on Tuesday many of its more than 150 million American users will feel a gentle but effective nudge to vote, courtesy of Mark Zuckerberg & Co. If past research is any guide, up to a few million more people will head to the polls partly because their Facebook friends encouraged them. Yet the process by which Facebook has developed this tool—what the firm calls the “voter megaphone”—has not been very transparent, raising questions about its use and Facebook’s ability to influence elections. Moreover, while Facebook has been developing and promoting this tool, it has also been quietly conducting experiments on how the company’s actions can affect the voting behavior of its users. In particular, Facebook has studied how changes in the news feed seen by its users—the constant drip-drip-drip of information shared by friends that is heart of their Facebook experience—can affect their level of interest in politics and their likelihood of voting. For one such experiment, conducted in the three months prior to Election Day in 2012, Facebook increased the amount of hard news stories at the top of the feeds of 1.9 million users. According to one Facebook data scientist, that change—which users were not alerted to—measurably increased civic engagement and voter turnout.”

Victims of Online Harassment Describe Their Experiences

Pew – Online Harassment – 73% of adult internet users have seen someone be harassed in some way online and 40% have personally experienced it. Interactive: Personal Experiences of Online Harassment

How Facebook Is Changing the Way Its Users Consume Journalism

NYT – Ravi Somaiya: “Many of the people who read this article will do so because Greg Marra, 26, a Facebook engineer, calculated that it was the kind of thing they might enjoy. Mr. Marra’s team designs the code that drives Facebook’s News Feed – the stream of updates, photographs, videos and stories that users see.Continue Reading

Digital Nation Report Shows Rapid Adoption of Mobile Internet Use

“A report released by the U.S. Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) found that Americans are rapidly embracing mobile Internet devices such as smart phones and tablet computers for a wide range of activities beyond just voice communications, such as checking email and using social networks. NTIA’s Exploring the Digital Nation: Embracing the MobileContinue Reading

Commentary – How Social Media Leads to a Less Stable World

While social media provides myriad benefits, the advances in connectivity and wealth may come at the expense of the state and the world’s stability, writes Curtis Hougland, CEO of Attentionusa.com, a global social marketing agency.  “James Foley. David Haines. Steven Sotloff. The list of people beheaded by followers of the Islamic State of Iraq andContinue Reading

Approaching Social Media Governance

Oermann, Markus and Lose, Martin and Schmidt, Jan-Hinrik and Johnsen, Katharina, Approaching Social Media Governance (September 19, 2014). HIIG Discussion Paper Series No. 2014-05. Available for download at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2498552 “In this working paper, we address the new forms of governance emerging within the technological and social spaces of Social Media. The overall aim of theContinue Reading

Russia, Ukraine, and the West: Social Media Sentiment in the Euromaidan Protests

“Internet Monitor is delighted to announce the publication of  “Russia, Ukraine, and the West: Social Media Sentiment in the Euromaidan Protests,” the fourth in a series of special reports that focus on key events and new developments in Internet controls and online activity. The report, authored by Bruce Etling, analyzes content from a range of online Russian- and English-language sources,Continue Reading

Reasoning about Interference Between Units: A General Framework

Reasoning about Interference Between Units: A General Framework, Jake Bowers, Mark M. Fredrickson, Costas Panagopoulos “If an experimental treatment is experienced by both treated and control group units, tests of hypotheses about causal effects may be difficult to conceptualize, let alone execute. In this article, we show how counterfactual causal models may be written and tested when theoriesContinue Reading

Talk with Me, Not at Me: Playing to Win with Social Media

Accenture, From Welcome to the Switching Economy: “Consumers everywhere have a wealth of information at their fingertips, giving them more control than ever regarding who gets their business. They know they have choices and switch providers when frustrated with their experiences. The result is the emergence of what Accenture calls the Switching Economy: the $5.9Continue Reading

New on LLRX – Tech goals for solo and small-firm lawyers

Via LLRX.com – Tech goals for solo and small-firm lawyers – Nicole Black review the highlights of results of two legal technology surveys about lawyers’ plans to use legal technology in their law practices. They offer a glimpse into the businesses of solo and small firm lawyers and provide indications of their assessments of the value that different typesContinue Reading

Follow the money: A study of cashtags on Twitter

Follow the money: A study of cashtags on Twitter, Martin Hentschel, Omar Alonso, First Monday, August 14, 2014. “The popularity of Twitter goes beyond trending topics, world events, memes, and popular hashtags. Recently a new way of sharing financial information is taking place in social media under the name of cashtags, stock ticker symbols that are prefixedContinue Reading

The executive order that led to mass spying, as told by NSA alumni

Cyrus Farivar – Ars Technica: [Executive Order] 12333 is used to target foreigners abroad, and collection happens outside the US,” whistleblower John Tye, a former State Department official, told Ars recently. “My complaint is not that they’re using it to target Americans, my complaint is that the volume of incidental collection on US persons is unconstitutional.” The document, known inContinue Reading