Friday, October 11, 2013

Data Memo #2

In this data memo, I looked at one week of activity on Sowerby and Luff's Fully Optamised Social Media Network. I examined from October 5-10, 2013. Though I only examined five days, it was quite a lot of data to process (26 posts, 25 comments, 9 comment likes, and 11 post likes). This was a particularly active week. All data was gathered at 12:43 pm Alaska Standard Time on October 10, 2013. The reason for choosing these dates was because of a deadline, but also included the fact that Sowerby and Luff released epsiode 92 of Fat Chance early: the episode was released on Friday instead of Sunday. Interestingly enough, this fact was not discussed by the community. The post that Brian Luff made the post announcing the new episode's release, it receive several likes but only one comment. This post to me seems really important, and would potentially merit more discussion, such as people coming back to it after listening to the episode and discussing things, but few people acknowledge the post and move on to discuss other things in the group.
This graph shows the activity of individual members of the group from October 5 to October 10, 2013.
I found it very interesting to see how much people were interacting and how directly they were interacting. These graphs were generated from a data sheet that listed out information on every post (who posted, what time they posted, where they posted from when that information was available, who liked it, who commented, who liked the comment) The data sheet is still somewhat incomplete and I have recently noticed that when I changed my written data into illustrated data, I missed a few people's activity. I plan on revisiting the data sheet and posting it later with complete data, including information of if the commenters are responding to each other, and checking to make sure my data is current up to date and accurate.

Until that time, it is important to notice something there are more posts and comments than any other way of communicating using the Facebook interface. (even with the data that I have found I missed when creating the graph and pie chart, the difference will more than likely not amount to very much) This information is very interesting because if it is a microcosm of Facebook, in my experience, there should be more likes, most all of my posts and the posts I see that my friends make, often likes out number comments,. However, as the pie chart below shows, over 72% (37% of which are posts and 35% are comments) of the communication that happened in the group this past week happened actively: no passive liking.
This pie chart shows the percentage of what activity was from October 5 to October 10, 2013
Active communication in the group, even if it was of a sarcastic nature, shows not only the interplay of audience with the show, but how the audience interacts with each other. If someone is repeatedly ignored or is infrequently recognized, this may point to the fact that this person does not post or comment much and is not an active part of the group. There is often a larger attention to paid to the members of the group who post frequently or have posts featured on the show, or post concerning the show (with the revised or continued data, I will show these numbers). This attention, may point towards the idea that the group is seeking attention from Sowerby and Luff, or that they are merely commenting on an advertised story. Furthermore, it may show that the people who are posting the most and receive the most attention, may be more in touch with the subject matter that this particular affinity group is attracted to.

Furthermore, the people who post more and receive more attention, increase their activity, and form, in a sense, a perceived identity of more "in-tuneness" with the group. This forms a sort of prestige for these people, despite the fact that they are interacting in a fan group on Facebook for a comedy podcast. In fact, I found myself when reading through the posts, more tempted to look at the links and posts made by people who's names reoccured several times. I may have simply been searching for more data, but it also felt more important to look at their posts, perhaps in the misguided belief that the stories they posted would be featured in the show. Furthermore, posts that received more likes were not only interesting statistically, but in relation to the show as well.

As I mentioned before, I had some problems when creating my analysis and the graphics, so I will be going back and reexamining my findings and regenerating these images. However, I do assure you that the missing data is very small and will more than likely not increase the percentages too heavily. 


Shanna Allen said...

I really like your second data set, particularly the graphs you’ve created. I found the data to be interesting, and I liked that you presented it that way. It was nice to see it in a different format instead of just text. Have you decided what data you are going to research and study for your final memo? After looking at both of your data sets, I think you could look at the relationship between what the moderators post and how that influences the comments of others. I’m thinking of the comment Georgina posted in your first data set about lipstick. People took that and continued on, but there were other comments that were possibly more substantive that were ignored. I wonder if that is because didn’t think those comments were important or if they were potentially ignored because Georgina and Brian didn’t comment as well? Another route might be to look at the nature of the posts that garner the most comments. What are those posts about? Are they controversial? I know the “Big Brother” post was somewhat controversial and had quite a few comments. But after looking at your graphs and the number of comments, I wonder if there are some other posts that would have had more comments. I think the idea of the interface between the podcast and Facebook is really interesting. Do you think that topics from the podcast elicit more responses on Facebook than a post from outside the podcast? Is there even a relationship there, or is all of the information on the Facebook group page directly from the podcast?

LaVonMarie said...


I love that you put your data into a graph, and I am interested if you gathered information again right after a show, how the data would compare. I guess I am interested if it is how the show was successful or particularly funny if that generates more dialogue. I am confused on your question on the passive liking, is it that you would expect more?

I also like how you have observed that unless you are active within the group, regardless of whether your comment is funny, intelligent or sarcastic, you are overall ignored by the other members this reminds me of the article by Knobel & Lankshear in which their collocation to a particular subject, identity becomes a way for them to build their digital capital. If they feed into a star and receive this recognition then they are able to build their own fan base. Nicely done Lars, and I look forward to more information and comparison on this particular focus.

Jennifer Stone said...

Lars--This gives some good big picture data about the group you're studying. I like how you look at individual participation over the course of several days. I would like you to develop your concept of what counts as participation and develop a more nuanced overview of the kinds of participation you're looking at. First, I don't really agree that liking is "passive" (nor would I agree that just reading the group and never posting is passive). How is liking an action that participants take? What role does that sort of activity play in the group? Second, right now you're just looking at kinds of activity rather than the content of the activity. An overview of themes or topics or kinds of posts and comments would give this analysis a lot more depth.