Tagged: Facebook

When Science, Customer Service, and Human Subjects Research Collide. Now What?

My brothers and sisters in data science, computational social science, and all of us studying and building the Internet of things inside or outside corporate firewalls, to improve a product, explore a scientific question, or both: we are now, officially, doing human subjects research. I’m frustrated that the state of public intellectualism allows us, individually, […]

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Facebook’s algorithm — why our assumptions are wrong, and our concerns are right

Many of us who study new media, whether we do so experimentally or qualitatively, our data big or small, are tracking the unfolding debate about the Facebook “emotional contagion” study, published recently in the Proceedings of the National Academies of Science. The research, by Kramer, Guillory, and Hancock, argued that small shifts in the emotions […]

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Trending Ethnography: Notes on Import, Prediction, and Digital Culture

The Background: “Dead and Buried” At the end of 2013, a flare-up involving the work of Daniel Miller and his colleagues revealed a complex set of tensions regarding how digital culture scholars, journalists, and others in the technology sector address public engagement, prediction, and ethnographic methods. In this essay I use these tensions to investigate […]

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Public (Research) Design: Un-friend Stories

An Introduction [Cross Posted at the CASTAC Blog] Ask an anthropologist a question and they’ll tell you a story. In this case, you didn’t ask, but I’m going to tell. During the fall of 2012, I was perusing my Facebook feed before bedtime, imagining myself to be reconnecting with old friends and keeping up with […]

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The specter of uncertainty

What do Facebook’s less than stellar IPO and Bankia’s downgrade by S&P have in common?  If you’re uncertain, you’re right. Facebook’s IPO was marred by uncertainty.  In the days leading up to its public offering, the talk surrounding Facebook was quite optimistic.  Yet, somehow uncertainty crept in.  My guess is that it had something to do […]

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