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Title: Emergence of consensus as a modular-to-nested transition in communication dynamics
Author: Borge Holthoefer, Javier  
Álvarez Baños, Raquel
Gracia Lázaro, Carlos
Moreno Vega, Yamir
Keywords: complex networks
nonlinear systems
social networks
Issue Date: Jan-2017
Publisher: Scientific Reports
Citation: Borge-Holthoefer, J., Álvarez Baños, R., Gracia-Lázaro, C. & Moreno Vega, Y. (2017). "Emergence of consensus as a modular-to-nested transition in communication dynamics". Scientific Reports, 7. ISSN 2045-2322. doi: 10.1038/srep41673
Abstract: Online social networks have transformed the way in which humans communicate and interact, leading to a new information ecosystem where people send and receive information through multiple channels, including traditional communication media. Despite many attempts to characterize the structure and dynamics of these techno-social systems, little is known about fundamental aspects such as how collective attention arises and what determines the information life-cycle. Current approaches to these problems either focus on human temporal dynamics or on semiotic dynamics. In addition, as recently shown, information ecosystems are highly competitive, with humans and memes striving for scarce resources-visibility and attention, respectively. Inspired by similar problems in ecology, here we develop a methodology that allows to cast all the previous aspects into a compact framework and to characterize, using microblogging data, information-driven systems as mutualistic networks. Our results show that collective attention around a topic is reached when the user-meme network self-adapts from a modular to a nested structure, which ultimately allows minimizing competition and attaining consensus. Beyond a sociological interpretation, we explore such resemblance to natural mutualistic communities via well-known dynamics of ecological systems.
Language: English
ISSN: 2045-2322MIAR
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