An Agent-Based Model of Urgent Diffusion in Social Media

18 Pages Posted: 23 Jul 2013

See all articles by Jeffrey Herrmann

Jeffrey Herrmann

University of Maryland

William Rand

North Carolina State University

Brandon Schein

University of Maryland

Neza Vodopivec

University of Maryland

Date Written: July 22, 2013

Abstract

With the growth of the use of social media, information is exchanged faster than ever. Understanding this diffusion of information is critical to planning for time sensitive events and situations. However, most traditional models of diffusion do not work well in situations where outside events are occurring at almost the same rate as diffusion dynamics within the network. In this paper, we present two models that provide insight into urgent diffusion dynamics using agent-based modeling. We fi t these models to data drawn from four major urgent diffusion events including: (1) the capture of Osama Bin Laden, (2) Hurricane Irene, (3) Hurricane Sandy, and (4) Election Night 2012. We show that in some cases social networks play a large role in the diffusion of information and in other cases they do not, and discuss the robustness of our models to a wider variety of urgent diffusion situations.

Keywords: urgent diffusion, diffusion of information, news, hurricanes, social networks, twitter

Suggested Citation

Herrmann, Jeffrey and Rand, William and Schein, Brandon and Vodopivec, Neza, An Agent-Based Model of Urgent Diffusion in Social Media (July 22, 2013). Robert H. Smith School Research Paper. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2297167 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2297167

Jeffrey Herrmann

University of Maryland ( email )

College Park
College Park, MD 20742
United States

William Rand (Contact Author)

North Carolina State University ( email )

Raleigh, NC 27695
United States

Brandon Schein

University of Maryland ( email )

College Park
College Park, MD 20742
United States

Neza Vodopivec

University of Maryland ( email )

College Park
College Park, MD 20742
United States

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