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Analysis of user popularity pattern and engagement prediction in online social networks

Authors
  • Mohammadi, Samin
Publication Date
Dec 04, 2018
Source
HAL-INRIA
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown
External links

Abstract

Nowadays, social media has widely affected every aspect of human life. The most significant change in people's behavior after emerging Online Social Networks (OSNs) is their communication method and its range. Having more connections on OSNs brings more attention and visibility to people, where it is called popularity on social media. Depending on the type of social network, popularity is measured by the number of followers, friends, retweets, likes, and all those other metrics that is used to calculate engagement. Studying the popularity behavior of users and published contents on social media and predicting its future status are the important research directions which benefit different applications such as recommender systems, content delivery networks, advertising campaign, election results prediction and so on. This thesis addresses the analysis of popularity behavior of OSN users and their published posts in order to first, identify the popularity trends of users and posts and second, predict their future popularity and engagement level for published posts by users. To this end, i) the popularity evolution of ONS users is studied using a dataset of 8K Facebook professional users collected by an advanced crawler. The collected dataset includes around 38 million snapshots of users' popularity values and 64 million published posts over a period of 4 years. Clustering temporal sequences of users' popularity values led to identifying different and interesting popularity evolution patterns. The identified clusters are characterized by analyzing the users' business sector, called category, their activity level, and also the effect of external events. Then ii) the thesis focuses on the prediction of user engagement on the posts published by users on OSNs. A novel prediction model is proposed which takes advantage of Point-wise Mutual Information (PMI) and predicts users' future reaction to newly published posts. Finally, iii) the proposed model is extended to get benefits of representation learning and predict users' future engagement on each other's posts. The proposed prediction approach extracts user embedding from their reaction history instead of using conventional feature extraction methods. The performance of the proposed model proves that it outperforms conventional learning methods available in the literature. The models proposed in this thesis, not only improves the reaction prediction models to exploit representation learning features instead of hand-crafted features but also could help news agencies, advertising campaigns, content providers in CDNs, and recommender systems to take advantage of more accurate prediction results in order to improve their user services

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