Quantification of Topic Propagation using Percolation Theory: A study of the ICWSM Network

author: Ali Azimi Bolourian, Department of Computing Science, University of Glasgow
published: June 24, 2009,   recorded: May 2009,   views: 3162

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Blogs facilitate online debates and discussions for millions of people around the world. Identifying the most popular and prevailing topics discussed in the Blogosphere is a crucial task. This paper describes our novel approach to the quantification of the level of topic propagation in the Blogosphere. It tries to answer one key question: How many people should know about a subject before it becomes prevalent? Our model uses graph-theoretic representations of the Blogosphere’s link structures that allows it to deduce the ‘Percolation Threshold’, which is then used in the quantification and definition of a prevalent or ‘Global’ topic. We applied our approach and analysed the social structure of the ICWSM data collection to find the answer.

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