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* Monday, March 19, 2007

20070319-05 CIC Conference: Creating the Social Web

- John Riedl, University of Minnesota, GroupLens Research

going to take a fun tour through the web and think about the implications for us! :-)

- LoC: founded in 1800: 280,000 headings and references applies to 18 million books
- Flickr - founded in 2004 with 25 million pictures

Web 2.0 is all about the social web, which means people connecting to people
we're going to have to think a bunch about applied social psychology
will look at the long tail

of everyone in this room, he knows the least about library science, so his goal is not to tell us how libraries will be influenced by these changes but to stimulate, interest, and entice so that we come back to him in a year and tell him how we are influenced

top 10 websites by traffic as analyzed by alexa
thinks we'll be amazed at how important the social web is to these 10 sites

1. Yahoo - picked Flickr
showed tag cloud
power is that it leverages the power of individuals to react to pictures and say what they think about it
write for me a query that finds a picture of a baby in a search engine in the three clicks it took him
showed visual map of term "library" - no connection between "tag" and "library" in
how do people find information in this new world?
showed geotagging in Flickr
"is that cool or what?" :-)
value of factual tags - people are tagging like crazy
a surprising phenomena

for the tag "anime" for "spirited away"
taggers agreed that factual tags are:
- useful overall (56% agreement)
- useful for learning about movies (60%)
- useful for finding movies (59%)

factual tags vs. subjective tags - "surreal" doesn't tell me anything

personal tags - "My DVDs" for "Dawn of the Dead"
17% agree personal tags *were* useful but
87% thought their personal tags helpful in organizing for the taggers themselves
personal and shared is new

showed some papers about tagging (sorry - I was enjoying his talk too much to get more detailed than this)

open questions:
- is tagging selfish (creates social good)?
- how can a system distinguish between "good" tags and "bad" tags?
- can folksonomy be encouraged? (showing users more tags leads to more vocabulary reuse
- is convergence valuable?

2. Google - it's about search but it's social search
value of a page is the value of the pages that link to it
fight for attention: The Shoe Store example of a business whose fortunes depended on google's pagerank
tied this to the long tail in the blogosphere
The Rich get Richer

NetFlix is giving $1 million to someone who creates a recommendation engine for them

3. MySpace - showed an entry from a young girl who is going to jail for admitting online that she was driving a car in which two people were killed

4. MSN - too boring to talk about so skipping

5. Ebay
gaming the system - buyers that receive negative ratings will punish you later, so not providing honest feedback
two papers about this

6. Amazon
most important resource is customers
customers "selling to" customers
showed the "clean underwear" example from when Amazon started selling clothing (customers who bought this bought clean underwear)
more gaming the system

7. YouTube
video by amateurs?
copyright issues
- CBS agreement
- music videos
why did google buy youtube?
paid so much for the community

8. World of Warcraft
a virtual world focused on combat - 8 million users
showed a video of Fayejin's funeral

9. Craig's List

10. Wikipedia
mentioned Stephen Colbert, wikiality, and the African elephants episode

movielens is a recommender site from John's research group
one external user added 5,000 movies to their database
he threatened to go on strike if they let others add content
added an interface for others to contribute for the scale, speed, robustness against change, and community participation it would give them

when to review - editing after, rather than before
the overall expected quality by a user of the system was higher for the Wikipedia model
the eventual equilibrium is the same

11. Facebook
study found that 90% of users thought peers would look at their page
only 3% thought professors would

12. CNN
now doing real life news for Second Life
Reuters has a live news bureau in Second Life to report back to the real world

- are these social interactions going to play out in real life, other than just games?
- John: millions of people going crazy and doing work for free...if we can harness just 1% of that.... doesn't know this and it might be useful just for games, but he'd like to get out in front of this interesting phenomen

- where is the economic motivation and what is the business model that makes sense in this environment?
- John: first, talked about economic theory but it didn't have anything to do with money; people are often motivated by things other than money; if you give people evidence that the work they are doing makes other peoples' lives better in concrete ways, they will be happy - unless you're making money off what they're doing, in which case they want a piece of it; how do you create incentive models without altering the previous model of involvement?

- what is the degree to which a world created by young people is overrun by the outside, will it no longer be cool and they will leave? does research show communities want to be with people like themselves?
- John: thinks we will see a crossing the chasm effect; the first wave will leave, but the reason they are going away is that all of us are here

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