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A Plea for Consistent Terminology for Personal and Social Networks

Presented at the 26th International Sunbelt Social Network Conference, Vancouver, Canada, 25-30 April 2006

14 Pages Posted: 26 Dec 2014  

Devon D. Brewer

Interdisciplinary Scientific Research

Date Written: April 25, 2006

Abstract

Consensual terminology is required for clear communication in any scientific field, especially for the most fundamental concepts. In recent years, researchers have introduced many new adjectives to refer to personal networks (e.g. local) and social networks (e.g. complete, global, sociocentric, sociometric and whole). I discuss desirable properties of scientific terminology and argue that each of the new terms is superfluous and misapplied. I conclude by suggesting that any mention of the new terms should at least involve explicit cross-referencing with the established terms, and that abandoning the new terms altogether in favor of the established terms would be even better.

Keywords: social networks, research methods

JEL Classification: C90

Suggested Citation

Brewer, Devon D., A Plea for Consistent Terminology for Personal and Social Networks (April 25, 2006). Presented at the 26th International Sunbelt Social Network Conference, Vancouver, Canada, 25-30 April 2006. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2542660 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2542660

Devon D. Brewer (Contact Author)

Interdisciplinary Scientific Research ( email )

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