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What does everybody know? Identifying event-specific sources from social media

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2 Author(s)
Debanjan Mahata ; Dept. of Inf. Sci., Univ. of Arkansas at Little Rock, Little Rock, AR, USA ; Nitin Agarwal

Social media is increasingly becoming a popular platform for the public to voice their opinion and present them to a huge audience in the web. The year 2011 saw one of the greatest use of social media in the rise and spread of various events, and has been rightly defined as the year of “Social Media Democracy”, with “The Protester” being named as the TIME magazine's person of the year 2011. Due to the power law distribution of the Internet, it is highly likely that the social media sites are buried in the Long Tail. It is therefore, of utmost importance to identify quality social media sources from the Long Tail, for understanding and exploring the real-life events in depth. In this work, we propose a framework to distinguish the disparate sources from social media that provide extremely significant information about various events. Specifically, we propose information theoretic measures to identify “specific” sources for an event (often buried in the Long Tail) and “closer” entities (individuals, groups, organizations, places, etc.) for an event. We also introduce a novel evaluation strategy for validating the proposed measures. Data for the research is collected from various blogging platforms. Experiments demonstrate promising results with interesting findings.

Published in:

Computational Aspects of Social Networks (CASoN), 2012 Fourth International Conference on

Date of Conference:

21-23 Nov. 2012