Homophily and social media

Facebook Twitter

Journalism 3.0 - Journalism 3.0 - Media Ecology and the Future. Traditional journalism is challenged by social media’s tenet that journalists are not superior to users.

Journalism 3.0 - Journalism 3.0 - Media Ecology and the Future

Everybody talks to everybody. “Here comes everybody”, to echo Clay Shirky’s book title. Social news, citizen journalism and democracy. This article aims to contribute to a critical research agenda for investigating the democratic implications of citizen journalism and social news.

Social news, citizen journalism and democracy

The article calls for a broad conception of ‘citizen journalism’ which is (1) not an exclusively online phenomenon, (2) not confined to explicitly ‘alternative’ news sources, and (3) includes ‘metajournalism’ as well as the practices of journalism itself. A case is made for seeing democratic implications not simply in the horizontal or ‘peer-to-peer’ public sphere of citizen journalism networks, but also in the possibility of a more ‘reflexive’ culture of news consumption through citizen participation. Untitled. Enclave Extremism and Journalism's Brave New World. Senator Ted Kennedy arrives to campaign for Barack Obama at a rally at East Los Angeles College in Monterey Park, California.

Enclave Extremism and Journalism's Brave New World

February 2008. Photo by Brian Baer/Sacramento Bee/McClatchy Tribune. In 1995, MIT technology specialist Nicholas Negroponte predicted the emergence of The Daily Me — a newspaper that you design personally, with each component carefully screened and chosen in advance. With the increasing range of communications options, Negroponte's prediction is coming true. With just a few clicks, you can find dozens of Web sites to show you that you are quite right to like what you already like and to think what you already think.

The Internet is making us stupid - Barack Obama News. Freedom of choice is not always good for democracy.

The Internet is making us stupid - Barack Obama News

This observation is at the heart of University of Chicago law professor Cass Sunstein’s book “Republic.com 2.0″ (an update of “Republic.com” in 2001), which argues that our country’s political discourse is fracturing in the information age. Sure, the Internet has been a boon to democracy in all sorts of ways, Sunstein acknowledges — but if new technology gives us unprecedented access to information, it also gives us more ways to avoid information we don’t like.

Conservatives are increasingly seeking only conservative views, liberals are seeking only liberal views, and never the twain shall meet. Sunstein’s career has bridged the political divide. As an attorney in the Justice Department’s Office of the Legal Counsel, he was an advisor to both Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan. Breaking Out of the Echo Chamber » contentious.com - Amy Gahran’s news and musings on how we communicate in the online age. This morning I listened to an excellent Radio Open Source interview.

Breaking Out of the Echo Chamber » contentious.com - Amy Gahran’s news and musings on how we communicate in the online age.

Host Christopher Lydon was talking to Global Voices Online founder Ethan Zuckerman and GVO managing editor Solana Larsen. I’m a huge fan of GVO and read it regularly — mainly since I enjoy hearing from people in parts of the world I generally don’t hear much about (or from) otherwise. One of the most interesting parts of the discussion concerned how homophily shapes our individual and collective view of the world.

Social software, serendipity and salad bars. (Mmm. Sybillance…) My friend Evgeny Morozov‘s bookmarks on del.icio.us are one of the places I look for inspiration when I’m feeling burned out on blogging, writing or thinking… which is more or less how I’m feeling near the tail end of a very long year.

Social software, serendipity and salad bars. (Mmm. Sybillance…)

Evgeny linked to a story from Nat Torkington on O’Reilly Radar about the ways in which social software can reinforce homophily – the tendency of individuals to associate with people who are alike in age, gender, class, value terms – and how users or designers of tools might fight these effects. Nat points out, “Designers first need to decide whether homophily is a a feature or a bug. Life is easy when you’re unchallenged: this is why people read the New York Times or watch Fox News…” This is, in essence, what Cass Sunstein worries about in Republic.com - in a world where one can choose media that matches one’s preconceptions and prejudices, what prevents us from choosing to live in an echo chamber of supportive voices? What Your Friends Don’t Know About You. How well do you know your friends’ political views? According to recent work by Winter Mason, Duncan Watts, and myself, you probably don’t know them as well as you think.

In particular, we found that when friends disagree on a political issue, they are unaware of that disagreement about 60% of the time. Even close friends who discuss politics are typically unaware of their differences in opinions. Lauren Rivera - Faculty - Kellogg School of Management. Homophily, serendipity, xenophilia. Posted by Ethan on Apr 25th, 2008 in Media, xenophilia | 38 comments There’s been a small but fascinating blog conversation going on surrounding the term “homophily”.

Homophily, serendipity, xenophilia

Journalism and media critic Amy Gahran encountered the term in an interview I and Solana Larsen gave with Chris Lydon of Radio Open Source and explored the concept in an extended riff and a set of bookmarks. Birds of a feather by smith-lovin, mcpherson, and cook. Predicting personality with social behavior: a comparative study Sibel Adalı and Jennifer Golbeck Social Network Analysis and Mining Vol. 4(1)

birds of a feather by smith-lovin, mcpherson, and cook

Shankar Vedantam - Why Everyone You Know Thinks the Same as You - washingtonpost.com. You can see it the next time you visit your office cafeteria or a nearby park: Whites sitting together with whites, blacks with blacks, young people with other young people.

Shankar Vedantam - Why Everyone You Know Thinks the Same as You - washingtonpost.com

When individuals from these groups mix, it is usually because they share something else in common, such as a pastime. Sociologists call this phenomenon homophily, a somewhat grand word to describe the idea that birds of a feather flock together.