T N T — The Network Thinkers: Arrows on Twitter

Posted on by Brandon Klein

Twitter is a social network that network scientists refer to as an asymmetric network -- the links are directional, they are drawn with arrows. Links between people on Twitter show direction of intent. The arrows are drawn from source to target.

Looking at a social graph from Twitter we can tell a lot by following the arrows...

who is aware of whom/what? whom/what is getting attention? who is involved in conversations on specific topics? who is central, and who is peripheral to the discussions?

This past week I was invited to a Twitter Chat (a.k.a. Tweetchat) on the topic of Serendipity. Two separate chat groups (#innochat and #ideachat) came together on a topic of overlapping interest. Twitter chats last for 1 hour and use a pre-determined Twitter hash-tag to track all of the tweets in the on-line conversation.