Fabian Flöck to present in the SONIC Speaker Series

SONIC Lab is proud to welcome Fabian Flöck, who will present a talk on Monday, May 19, 2014 (3:00pm) in SONIC Lab in the Frances Searle Building room 1.459. All are welcome to attend. To schedule a one-on-one meeting with a SONIC speaker please schedule a time at bit.ly/SonicSpeaker (May 19, from 10  am to 5 pm).

Accurately Mining Collaboration Interactions in Wikipedia to Detect Systematic Social Mechanisms

Several studies have described systematically occurring interaction patterns, or “social mechanisms”, between editors in collaborative writing of Wikipedia articles. These include ownership behavior, editor camps, newcomer rejection and others. Yet, only few of them have been adequately modeled to detect them methodically. The research that will be presented aims to provide such a model, especially finding suited metrics to describe potentially harmful social mechanisms and to understand them better.

The main challenges that arise in this context are (i) to comprehensively and accurately mine data about the underlying editor to editor interactions occurring in an article (i.e., who exactly collaborates with or antagonizes whom?) and (ii) to represent these interactions in an appropriate model capturing all relevant intricacies over time, e.g., a social graph structure; and (iii) based on this, to find correlations of emerging patterns with the appearance of explicit indicators for these mechanisms.

The talk will cover how we already collected relevant social mechanisms from the literature and successfully tackled the data mining challenge, providing novel raw data to infer editor relationships. It will then outline our current work on modeling editor interactions and plans how to detect the suspected mechanisms in the data.

About Fabian Flöck

Fabian Flöck is a research associate and PhD candidate at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany. Prior to pursuing his academic career, he worked as head product manager for a Social Network based in Hamburg, Germany and as a consultant on web design and content architecture for a creative agency in San Francisco, CA. He holds a Diplom (≈M.Sc.) in Media Studies/ Empirical Sociology from the University of Cologne. His research focuses on how to mine the social dynamics in large-scale collaborative online platforms and how they shape the performance of these systems. This includes research work on socio-technical interactions in tagging systems, crowdsourcing solutions, online communities (such as reddit), as well as his main research topic, studying how certain systematic social mechanisms in Wikipedia can influence content production and how they can be detected and made more transparent.