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Pizza Talk III: 

Online-Firestorms

Negative Dynamics in Social
Media Networks!

Sunbelt XXXIV

Thoma...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Agenda	
  
	
  
Online-­‐Firestorms	
  –	
  The	
  dark	
  side	
  of	
  word	...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

A	
  German	
  problem?	
  
	
  
	
  
	
  
	
  
	
  
	
  
	
  
	
  
→	
  Poli%...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Unse3ledness	
  in	
  Poli6cs	
  and	
  Business	
  
“Let’s	
  be;er	
  not	
 ...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Anglicism	
  of	
  the	
  Year	
  2011	
  in	
  Germany	
  
„Shitstorm	
  fills...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Intercultural	
  Differences	
  
	
  
“Shitstorm”	
  vs.	
  “Online-­‐Firestorm...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Defini6on	
  
“An	
  Online-­‐Firestorm	
  is	
  a	
  phenomenon	
  
that	
  de...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Case	
  Study:	
  Rolling	
  Stone	
  Magazine	
  
	
  
	
  
	
  
	
  
	
  
	
...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Rolling	
  Stone	
  Firestorm	
  -­‐	
  Analysis	
  
	
  
TwiVer	
  data	
  us...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Empirical	
  Observa6ons/Factors	
  
Constant	
  flow	
  of	
  informa6on,	
  s...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Tweets/Day	
  

Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Rolling	
  Stone	
  Firestorm	
  -­‐	
  Numbers	
  
	
  
•  Peak:	
  7/17	
  +...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Empirical	
  Observa6ons/Factors	
  
No	
  gradualist	
  opinions,	
  absence	...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Rolling	
  Stone	
  Firestorm	
  -­‐	
  Retweets	
  
RT @LisaLampanelli: Poll:...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Empirical	
  Observa6ons/Factors	
  
Friends	
  act	
  as	
  informa6on	
  sou...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Rolling	
  Stone	
  Firestorm	
  -­‐	
  Top	
  users?	
  
•  Top	
  10	
  user...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Empirical	
  Observa6ons/Factors	
  
Amplified	
  epidemic	
  spreading,	
  net...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Empirical	
  Observa6ons/Factors	
  
Offline	
  and	
  online	
  media	
  reinfo...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Rolling	
  Stone	
  Firestorm	
  –	
  Media	
  Dynamics	
  	
  	
  
•  702	
  ...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

Empirical	
  Observa6ons/Factors	
  
Modified	
  opinion	
  adop6on	
  process,...
Thomas	
  Zorbach,	
  Jürgen	
  Pfeffer	
  

“Our mission is to go forward, and it has only just begun.
There's still much ...
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Pizza Talk III: Online-Firestorms - Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks

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Talk given by Thomas Zorbach & Jürgen Pfeffer February on 21st 2014 at the Sunbelt XXXIV Social Networking conference in St. Pete Beach, Florida, USA

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Pizza Talk III: Online-Firestorms - Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks

  1. 1. 82 1 ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Pizza Talk III: 
 Online-Firestorms
 Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks! Sunbelt XXXIV
 Thomas Zorbach & Jürgen Pfeffer
 February 21st 2014, St. Pete Beach, FL! Center  for     Computa-onal    Analysis  of     Social  and  Organiza-onal  Systems  
  2. 2. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Agenda     Online-­‐Firestorms  –  The  dark  side  of  word  of  mouth     –  What  is  it?   –  How  does  it  work?   –  What  can  we  do?   Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!
  3. 3. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   A  German  problem?                   →  Poli%cians,  celebri%es,  companies  under  heavy  fire     Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!   3  
  4. 4. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Unse3ledness  in  Poli6cs  and  Business   “Let’s  be;er  not  say  anything.  Otherwise,  we’ll  have  an  online  firestorm   tomorrow!”  (Angela  Merkel,  Bundeskanzlerin)   → Sign of the participatory culture (Jenkins, 2006) Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!   4  
  5. 5. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Anglicism  of  the  Year  2011  in  Germany   „Shitstorm  fills  the  gap  in  German  vocabulary  that  was     opened  up  by  changes  in  the  public  debate  culture.“   → Kick off for research project Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!   5  
  6. 6. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Intercultural  Differences     “Shitstorm”  vs.  “Online-­‐Firestorm”           → “Title is not appropriate” Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!
  7. 7. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Defini6on   “An  Online-­‐Firestorm  is  a  phenomenon   that  describes  the  sudden  discharge  of   large  quan%%es  of  nega%ve  word  of   mouth  and  complaint  behavior   against  a  person,  company,  or  group   in  social  media  networks,  oHen  paired   with  intense  indigna%on  that  has   shiHed  its  focus  from  an  actual  point   of  cri%cism.“   Pfeffer,  J.  &  Zorbach,  T.  &  Carley,  K.M.  (2013).   Understanding  online  firestorms:  Nega%ve  word  of   mouth  dynamics  in  social  media  networks.  Journal  of   Marke%ng  Communica%ons   Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!   7  
  8. 8. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Case  Study:  Rolling  Stone  Magazine                       →  Cover  showing    Dzhokhar  Tsarnaev     Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!   8  
  9. 9. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Rolling  Stone  Firestorm  -­‐  Analysis     TwiVer  data  used:     –  ~1.5%  of  all  tweets  are  geo-­‐tagged   –  Long-­‐term  collec-on  of  US  geo-­‐Tweets   –  “rollingstone”  or  “rolling  stone”   Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!
  10. 10. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Empirical  Observa6ons/Factors   Constant  flow  of  informa6on,  short  informa6on  half-­‐life   •  Real-­‐-me  messages  in  social  media  create  a  constant  flow  of   communica-on     •  Many  people  can  be  reached  within  a  short  period  of  -me   •  Result:    Temporal  dominance  of  a  single  topic   •  Communica-on/reac-on  cycle   –  Tradi-onal  newspaper:  1  day   –  Social  media:  hours  or  minutes   •  Half-­‐Life  (Burton  and  Kebler,  1960)  of  social  media  informa-on:   –  Hours  or  even  minutes  (Fang,  2007).     •  TwiVer:  Cri-cal  role  in  the  propaga-on  of  all  online  firestorms   →  Speed  and  volume   Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!   10  
  11. 11. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Tweets/Day   Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!
  12. 12. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Rolling  Stone  Firestorm  -­‐  Numbers     •  Peak:  7/17  +  7/18   •  5,836  tweets,  4,571  different  users   •  60  users  with  min.  5  tweets  (=473  tweets)   Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!
  13. 13. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Empirical  Observa6ons/Factors   No  gradualist  opinions,  absence  of  discursive  interac6ons   •  Opinion-­‐forming  systems  without  sophis-cated  or  gradualist  opinions   •  Re-­‐tweet,  ‘like’,  or  ‘+1’     •  Decision-­‐making  process  as  binary  choices  (Schelling,  1973)     •  ”either-­‐or  situa-ons”   →  Binary  choices   Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!   13  
  14. 14. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Rolling  Stone  Firestorm  -­‐  Retweets   RT @LisaLampanelli: Poll: 65% of Americans thought Rolling Stone cover w Boston Bomber was inappropriate. Other 35% thought John Mayer grew… Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!
  15. 15. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Empirical  Observa6ons/Factors   Friends  act  as  informa6on  source  and  as  filter   •  Connec-ons  tend  to  be  based  on  homophily  (McPherson  et  al.,  2001)   –  similar  in  age,  gender,  and  socio-­‐economic  status   •  Plus:  Technology  filters  informa-on  based  on  interests   •  Filter  bubble  (Pariser,  2011)  is  a  concept  which  refers  to  over-­‐ emphasizing  the  importance  of  single  topics  or  opinions             →    Lack  of  diversity     Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!   15  
  16. 16. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Rolling  Stone  Firestorm  -­‐  Top  users?   •  Top  10  user  and  their  number  of  geo-­‐tweets  in  July  2013:   –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  –  trendinaliaUS Boston_CP ChelseaKrost IndianapolisCP Logan_Rosalez JDawgMadden LisaG_325 MaVhewKeysLive TimothyODonnel2 GlutenFreeDog  9,741    7,612    7,314    6,873    3,377    3,301    3,266    2,784    2,645    1,848   •  Spammers,  bots?   Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!
  17. 17. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Empirical  Observa6ons/Factors   Amplified  epidemic  spreading,  network  clusters   •  Transi-ve  link  crea-ons  (Heider,  1946)   C A B   •  Social  media  systems  intensify  this  effect  with  link  sugges-ons   →  Network  clusters  &  echo  chambers     Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!   17  
  18. 18. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Empirical  Observa6ons/Factors   Offline  and  online  media  reinforce  one  another   •  Social  media  are  an  important  informa-on  source  for  tradi-onal   media  (Diakopoulos  et  al.,  2012).   •  TwiVer  is  used  as  “radar”   •  “Sharability”  triggers  prolifera-on  in  social  media       Tradi-onal   Social   Media   Media       →    Cross  media  dynamics   Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!   18  
  19. 19. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Rolling  Stone  Firestorm  –  Media  Dynamics       •  702  re-­‐tweets:   –  –  –  –  RT @nytimes: CVS and Walgreens 35%  RT  @ny-mes   Ban an Issue of Rolling Stone http:// 24%  RT  @OpieRadio   t.co/6mSRHuT671 30%  RTs  from  5  journalists   Almost  all  are  re-­‐tweets  from  media  outlets   RT @OpieRadio: The news shows outrage for the Rolling Stone cover by SHOWING THE ROLLING STONE COVER. #Dopes Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!
  20. 20. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   Empirical  Observa6ons/Factors   Modified  opinion  adop6on  process,  dominant  network  effects   Diffusion  and  adop-on  process  (Rogers,  1995):   •  Knowledge   Filter  Bubble   –  The  agent  gets  in  contact  with  a  new  opinion  or  belief.     •  Persuasion   Echo  Chamber   –  The  agent  starts  to  have  a  posi-ve  or  nega-ve  stance.  Re-­‐infec-on.   •  Decision     –  The  opinion  or  belief  is  accepted  or  rejected.   •  Propaga%on   –  The  agent  starts  to  ac-vely  propagate  the  opinion  or  belief.  Infec-on.   •  Affirma%on   Echo  Chamber   –  Posi-ve  feedback  encourages,  nega-ve  feedback  destabilizes.   →  Cogni%ve  processes  get  replaced  by  network  effects!   Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!   20  
  21. 21. Thomas  Zorbach,  Jürgen  Pfeffer   “Our mission is to go forward, and it has only just begun. There's still much to do, still so much to learn. Engage!” Jean-Luc Picard, TNG Season 1 Ep. 26   Thomas  Zorbach   t.zorbach@vm-­‐people.de   @vmpeople       Jürgen  Pfeffer   jpfeffer@cs.cmu.edu   @JurgenPfeffer         Online-Firestorms. Negative Dynamics in Social Media Networks!    

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