Homophily and influence
See also Causality, Causal inference and Contagion.
It has been well-known that “similarity breeds connection”[^1], and the phenomenon is called ‘homophily’. One of the biggest issues is “can we distinguish influence from homophily with observational data?” James H and Nicholas A published a series of paper on the spreading of obesity, smoking, etc through a social network. There has been a long debate on these papers.
- Is obesity contagious? A Review of the Debate over the “Network Effects” of Obesity by Conrad Lee
- Social contagion? Maybe not… by Michał Bojanowski
- Quantifying causal influences
- Differences in the mechanics of information diffusion across topics: idioms, political hashtags, and complex contagion on twitter
- TwitterRank: finding topic-sensitive influential twitterers
- Measuring user influence in Twitter: The million follower fallacy