I am a Distinguished Professor of Informatics and Computer Science at the Indiana University School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering, director of the Observatory on Social Media, and a member (and former director) of the Center for Complex Networks and Systems Research. I also have courtesy appointments in Cognitive Science and Physics, serve on the advisory board of the IU Network Science Institute (IUNI), and am a Fellow of the Center for Computer-Mediated Communication, a Senior Research Fellow of the Kinsey Institute, and a Fellow at the ISI Foundation in Torino, Italy.
Research in my group, NaN, spans computational social science, network science, Web science, and data science, with a focus on analyzing and modeling the spread of information and misinformation in social networks and detecting and countering the manipulation of social media. We also study social computing, Web search and data mining, and science of science.
My calendar is a bit crowded. You may schedule an appointment with Tara Holbrook, our center’s coordinator. Or you can try your luck by Doodle Bookable Calendar, email, phone (+1-812-856-1377), or in person (Informatics East room 314).
Prospective students interested in joining my group, NaN, should look at this advice before contacting me. Then, if still interested, they should apply to one of our PhD programs: Informatics (Complex Networks & Systems track), Computer Science, Cognitive Science, or a combination. Check out the new NSF-Funded Interdisciplinary Training Program in Complex Networks and Systems! I am usually unable to respond to inquiries from prospective students unless they have already been admitted to one of these programs.
CNetS students, postdocs, and faculty members will be presenting 12 papers, 7 posters, and a tutorial on OSoMe tools at the 2000 International Conference on Computational Social Science (IC2S2), held online this year due to COVID-19. In addition, Fil Menczer will deliver one of the keynotes. (Read more ...)
In the groundbreaking new PBS series "NetWorld," Niall Ferguson visits network theorists, social scientists and data analysts (including at CNetS!) to explore the intersection of social media, technology and the spread of cultural movements. Reviewing classic experiments and cutting-edge research, NetWorld demonstrates how human behavior, disruptive technology and profit can energize ideas and communication, ultimately changing the (Read more ...)
I am very honored and feel that this is a recognition of years of teamwork with wonderful colleagues and amazing students and postdocs at IU.
First announced in September 2019, the new BotSlayer software to expose disinformation networks is designed and developed by CNetS faculty and students in collaboration with IUNI staff and the Observatory on Social Media. BotSlayer is an application that helps track and detect potential manipulation of information spreading on Twitter. It can be used by journalists, researchers, civil society organizations, corporations, and political candidates to discover in real-time new coordinated disinformation campaigns. Read about how (Read more ...)
UPDATE: This paper is ranked #3 most read among all articles published by Nature Communications in 2018
Analysis by CNetS researchers of information shared on Twitter during the 2016 U.S. presidential election has found that social bots played a disproportionate role in spreading misinformation online. The study, published in the journal Nature Communications, analyzed 14 million messages and 400,000 articles shared on Twitter between May 2016 and March 2017 -- a period that spans the end of the 2016 presidential primaries and (Read more ...)
Congratulations to Clayton A. Davis, who successfully defended his PhD dissertation titled "Collect, Count, and Compare": Expanding Access and Scope of Social Media Analysis. Dr. Davis work explored ways to facilitate research using massive social data through tools that are friendly for non-technical users, robust to manipulation by social bots, and that offer strict anonymity guarantees. His work has been featured on the cover of Communications of the ACM and quoted in top worldwide media venues. Web interfaces for his projects, including Botometer, Kinsey Reporter, and the Observatory on Social Media, have (Read more ...)
Congratulations to Dimitar Nikolov, who successfully defended his PhD dissertation on Information Exposure Biases in Online Behaviors. Dr. Nikolov s research explored the unintentional biases introduced by filtering, ranking, and recommendation algorithms that mediate our online consumption of information. His findings show that our reliance on modern online technologies limits exposure to diverse points of view and makes us vulnerable to misinformation. In particular, he analyzed two massive Web traffic datasets to quantify the popularity and homogeneity bias of several popular (Read more ...)
Filippo Menczer, a professor of computer science and informatics at CNetS, appeared on a panel of experts to discuss the emergence and dissemination of misinformation, and how it threatens society at the annual meeting of American Association for the Advancement of Science in Washington, D.C., Feb. 15.
Menczer was a part of a three-person panel and presented a talk, “Eight Ways Social Media Makes Society Vulnerable to Misinformation.” The talk provided an overview of ongoing network (Read more ...)