Why some ideas dominate the Internet – Social Influence Bias

Ever wondered why some posts dominate the Net, especially Social Media. Clueless why that eventhough you and your friend posted the same topic for discussion, you friend’s post getting more likes than yours? Well, the internet is not a perfect meritocracy. Popularity can be gamed, say MIT researchers.

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A post covering the research on TechCrunch says “It is easy to game the popularity of some ideas by exploiting the fact that Internet users are overly optimistic sheep who blindly rate the value of stories positively if they first see that others already liked it. In a brand-new study, MIT’s Sinan Aral found that he could experimentally boost the popularity of articles 32 percent on a news aggregator, like Reddit.com, by posting them with an initial few likes.”

Read the entire research study here


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