Among the millions of real people tweeting about the presidential race, there are also a lot accounts operated by fake people, or “bots.” Politicians and regular users alike use these accounts to increase their follower bases and push messages. PBS NewsHour science correspondent Miles O’Brien reports on how CNetS computer scientists can analyze Twitter handles to determine whether or not they are bots.
Research on detection of social bots by CNetS faculty members Alessandro Flammini and Filippo Menczer, former IUNI research scientist Emilio Ferrara, and graduate students Clayton Davis, Onur Varol, and Prashant Shiralkar was featured on the covers of the two top computing venues: the June issue of Computer (flagship magazine of the IEEE Computer Society) and the July issue of Communications of the ACM (flagship publication of the ACM). Continue reading Social bot research featured on CACM, IEEE Computer covers
Congratulations to CASCI alumnus Dr. Ahmed Abdeen Hamed who was recognized by FastCompany magazine, among the most creative people in the world, in 2016, for his research publication entitled: Twitter K-H networks in action: Advancing biomedical literature for drug search.Dr. Hamed completed his Computer Science MS degree at Indiana University in May 2005 and joined our Complex Networks & Systems track of the PhD in Informatics in the Fall of 2008. For personal reasons, he finished his PhD at the University of Vermont, but started his research in biomedical text mining with the CASCI group.
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.
Congratulations to Clayton Davis, who won the best presenter prize at WWW 2016 Developers Day! Clayton presented BotOrNot: A system to evaluate social bots, a paper coauthored with Onur Varol, Emilio Ferrara, Alessandro Flammini and Filippo Menczer, that describes our latest API developments with the BotOrNot system.
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.
Update: On March 21st, 2016 the paper described below (PMC4720984) was highlighted by Russ Altman from Stanford University in his yearly review as one of 30 important papers of the year in translational bioinformatics.
Using complex networks analysis and social media mining, CNETS researchers from the CASCI team have found that Instagram, a growing social media platform among teens, can be used “to uncover drug-drug interactions (DDI) and adverse drug reactions (ADR).” The work shows that this popular social media service is “a very powerful source of data with great promise in the public-health domain”. The study, “Monitoring Potential Drug Interactions and Reactions via Network Analysis of Instagram User Timelines,” supported by an R01 grant from the National Institutes of Health as well as a gift from Persistent Inc., was recently published and presented at the Pacific Symposium on Biocomputing (PSB 2016), in Hawaii. (PubMed, arXiv). The results are based on almost 7.000 user timelines associated with depression drugs which combined have 5+ million posts.
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.