BITlab: Behavior Information Technology

404 Wilson Rd. Room 249
Communication Arts & Sciences
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824

Facebook Data Talk

By: Katie Hoban

At the weekly BITlab meeting, Rebecca Gray talked about her work she did at Facebook. The research being done was about crowdsourcing help among Facebook friends via posts to one’s social network. An example of this would be someone asking for suggestions about a certain topic, and getting responses from their friends back. These posts can be asking for emotional support, or just general questions. Survey participants were recruited from two samples of United States Facebook users: those who had posted any kind of status update in the seven days preceding the survey and those who had posted at least one of these “mobilization” requests. Their posting behavior was monitored over 28 days, and when the results came back it showed that those who posted requests over the course of that 28 day period perceived higher levels of bridging and bonding social capital - sociological constructs related to access to diverse and substantial social resources respectively. This information was very interesting, and we appreciate Rebecca sharing it with us.