How newsgroups refer to NetScan data

Reflections and Reactions to Social Accounting Meta-Data. Eric Gleave (U of Washington) and Marc Smith (Microsoft Research). At C&T.

In 18 months, there were about 5000 messages that explicitly referred to “netscan.research”. Analyzed/coded 952 messages.

Basic findings:

  • Half discuss groups. 80% of those linking to the Netscan report card for the group, 17% explicitly discuss the group’s “health”.
  • 22% discuss the message’s author, such as saying that the author is #1 in the group.
  • 31% discuss others, including their stats; 5% of these are “troll checks”
  • 48% discuss the Netscan system itself

Some discussion points:

  • Helpful for comparisons between competing groups on similar topics
  • Reduces costs of monitoring and sanctioning
  • Facilitates construction and maintenance of status
  • Identifies people who are trolls
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About Paul Resnick

Professor, University of Michigan School of Information Personal home page
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