Must-reads for how to study people’s online behavior (and navigate the ethical challenges that entails!)

I realized after posting my thoughts on how to think about social media as a site of human interaction (and all the ethical and methodological implications of doing so) that I forgot to leave links to what are, bar none, the best resources on the planet for policy makers, researchers, and the general public thinking through all …

Continue reading Must-reads for how to study people’s online behavior (and navigate the ethical challenges that entails!)

Social Media Collective weigh in on the debates about the Facebook emotions study

I have the privilege of spending the year as a visiting researcher with the social media researchers at Microsoft Research New England. And for the last two weeks or so, its been a particularly stimulating time to be among them. Spurred by the controversial Facebook emotions study and the vigorous debate surrounding it, there's been a …

Continue reading Social Media Collective weigh in on the debates about the Facebook emotions study

A system designer’s take on the Facebook study – a response to danah boyd’s blog post

Last week I sent an email reply to danah boyd in response to her thoughtful post about the Facebook study. She encouraged me to post it publicly, but I was a bit scared by the viciousness and panic of the reactions. At the same time, I worried that the silence of people who do research …

Continue reading A system designer’s take on the Facebook study – a response to danah boyd’s blog post

What does the Facebook experiment teach us?

I'm intrigued by the reaction that has unfolded around the Facebook "emotion contagion" study. (If you aren't familiar with this, read this primer.) As others have pointed out, the practice of A/B testing content is quite common. And Facebook has a long history of experimenting on how it can influence people's attitudes and practices, even …

Continue reading What does the Facebook experiment teach us?