Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Blogs During the London Attacks: Top Information Sources and Topics

Mike Thelwall

Blogs are probably most associated with the high profile postings of a few highly popular bloggers who debate or comment on major news stories, but for each 'A-lister' there are numerous faceless bloggers who write about their own daily lives and/or interests. Hence it is interesting to investigate the extent to which an event with extensive media coverage, such as the London attacks, is reflected in blogspace as a whole. This paper reports a descriptive analysis of blog postings around the London attacks of July 7, 2005. The core of this study is the development of methods to identify and report on bloggers’ activities in a way that is not dominated by prolific bloggers or repetitive blog postings. We report daily trends for the top links and topics for three sets of data: all bloggers’ postings; the postings of bloggers who mentioned London at least once; and the blog postings mentioning London. Although only 5% of active bloggers ever mentioned London by name, the attacks appeared to be the most significant event in blogspace during the two weeks after the initial bombings. Bloggers who posted about London were found to be atypical, linking and posting much more frequently than general bloggers. The results suggest a dichotomy between externally-focused, news-aware approximately daily bloggers and internally-focused diary-like approximately weekly bloggers.


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  • What criteria is used for granting EU academic grants?
    Mike mentioned "we got a European grant, tried to mine links from blogs, but couldn't; so we are grateful to Intelliseek" etc etc.
    Building a blog crawler and extracting links is a project of a few days, which any 2nd-year CS student can easily handle. How hard is it for European academics??

    By Blogger wwe2006, at 11:17 AM, May 23, 2006  

  • Please, let's not use this forum for flaming.

    I can vouch for the fact that building a large scale blog crawler capable of obtaining the full content of blog posts with large coverage of the blogosphere is most definitely not the work of a few days.

    Natalie Glance

    By Blogger wwe2006, at 11:28 AM, May 23, 2006  

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