The deluge of online and offline misinformation is overloading the exchange of ideas upon which democracies depend. Many have argued that echo chambers are increasingly constricting the ability of alternative perspectives to provide a check on one’s viewpoints. Suffering fragmentation and declining public trust, the Fourth Estate struggles to carry out its traditional editorial role distinguishing facts from fiction. Without those safeguards, fake news, conspiracy theories, and deceptive social bots proliferate, facilitating the manipulation of public opinion. Countering misinformation while protecting freedom of speech will require collaboration between stakeholders across industry, journalism, and academia. To foster such collaboration, the Workshop on Digital Misinformation will be held in conjunction with the 2017 International Conference on Web and Social Media (ICWSM) in Montreal, on May 15, 2017. Continue reading ICWSM 2017 Workshop on Digital Misinformation
Sponsored by Persistent Systems. Luis Rocha, Director of the Complex Systems PhD track in the School of Information and Computing at Indiana University Bloomington, explains the new software-driven approach to medical research. Big data generated through social media such as Twitter and Instragram provides a far deeper and fuller examination of the impact of medicines and diseases, leading to greater actionable insights to improve the efficacy of prevention and treatment.
Did more people see #thedress as blue and black or white and gold? How many Twitter users wanted pop star Katy Perry to take the #icebucketchallenge? The power to explore online social media movements — from the pop cultural to the political — with the same algorithmic sophistication as top experts in the field is now available to journalists, researchers and members of the public from a free, user-friendly online software suite released today by scientists at Indiana University. The Web-based tools, called the Observatory on Social Media, or “OSoMe” (pronounced “awesome”), provide anyone with an Internet connection the power to analyze online trends, memes and other online bursts of viral activity. An academic pre-print paper on the tools is available in the open-access journal PeerJ.
“This software and data mark a major goal in our work on Internet memes and trends over the past six years,” said Filippo Menczer, director of the Center for Complex Networks and Systems Research and a professor in the IU School of Informatics and Computing. “We are beginning to learn how information spreads in social networks, what causes a meme to go viral and what factors affect the long-term survival of misinformation online. The observatory provides an easy way to access these insights from a large, multi-year dataset.” Read more.
The Center for Complex Networks and Systems Research (CNetS.indiana.edu), jointly with the Indiana University Network Science Institute (IUNI.iu.edu), has
two three open postdoctoral positions, two on the characterization and modeling of complex systems and one to study critical processes in networks of networks. The appointments start in Summer/Fall 2016 for one year and are renewable for one or two additional years, subject to funding and performance. The salary is competitive and benefits are generous.
The postdocs will join a dynamic and interdisciplinary team that includes computer, physical, and cognitive scientists. Two postdocs will work with Prof. Santo Fortunato on various areas of complex systems research, including community detection in networks, computational social science (opinion dynamics, online experiments on social influence) and science of science (citation and collaboration patterns between scientists, impact dynamics). A third postdoc will work with Prof. Filippo Radicchi. Continue reading Three postdoc positions in complex networks and systems
In an interview aired on the ABC (Australian) evening news program “The World” on April 4, 2016, Filippo Menczer discussed with host Beverley O’Connor how information and misinformation spread throughout the Internet and the roles of network structure and social bubbles in determining meme virality. Video here.
Big success for CNetS researchers at the Conference on Complex Systems (CCS’15)! Here are the accepted talks from our center:
- Computational fact checking from knowledge networks by Giovanni Luca Ciampaglia, Prashant Shiralkar, Johan Bollen, Luis M Rocha, Filippo Menczer and Alessandro Flammini
- Control of complex networks requires structure and dynamics by Alexander Gates and Luis M. Rocha
- Darwin’s Semantic Voyage by Jaimie Murdock, Simon DeDeo, and Colin Allen
- Defining and Identifying Sleeping Beauties in Science by Qing Ke, Emilio Ferrara, Filippo Radicchi and Alessandro Flammini
- Detecting conflict in social unrest using Instagram* by Rion Brattig Correia, Kwan Nok Chan and Luis M. Rocha
- Detecting Campaigns in Social Media by Onur Varol, Emilio Ferrara, Filippo Menczer and Alessandro Flammini
- Discourse Polarization in the US Congress by Rion Brattig Correia, Kwan Nok Chan and Luis M. Rocha
- Eigenmood Twitter Analysis: measuring collective mood variation by Ian B. Wood, Joana Gonçalves-Sá, Johan Bollen and Luis M. Rocha
- Evolution of Online User Behavior During a Social Upheaval by Onur Varol, Emilio Ferrara, Christine Ogan, Filippo Menczer and Alessandro Flammini
- How human perception of the urban environment influences the abandonment process by Stefani Crabstree, Simon DeDeo
- Information theoretic structures of the French Revolution by Alexander Barron, Simon DeDeo, and Rebecca Spang
- Measuring Emotional Contagion in Online Social Networks by Zeyao Yang, Emilio Ferrara
- Modularity and the Spread of Perturbations in Complex Dynamical Systems* by Artemy Kolchinsky, Alexander J. Gates and Luis M. Rocha
- On Predictability of Rare Events Leveraging Social Media by Lei Le, Emilio Ferrara and Alessandro Flammini
- Optimal network modularity for information diffusion by Azadeh Nematzadeh, Emilio Ferrara, Alessandro Flammini and Yong-Yeol Ahn
- Redundancy and control in complex networks by Luis M. Rocha
- The Rise of Social Bots in Online Social Networks by Emilio Ferrara, Onur Varol, Prashant Shiralkar, Clayton Davis, Filippo Menczer and Alessandro Flammini
Simon DeDeo will also deliver one of the plenary talks. *Denotes papers “starred”, or designated as especially worthwhile by the CCS15 program committee.