Dynamical strength of social ties in information spreading Articles uri icon

publication date

  • April 2011

start page

  • 1

end page

  • 4

issue

  • 4 (045102R)

volume

  • 83

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1539-3755

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1550-2376

abstract

  • We investigate the temporal patterns of human communication and its influence on the spreading of information in social networks. The analysis of mobile phone calls of 20 million people in one country shows that human communication is bursty and happens in group conversations. These features have the opposite effects on the reach of the information: while bursts hinder propagation at large scales, conversations favor local rapid cascades. To explain these phenomena we define the dynamical strength of social ties, a quantity that encompasses both the topological and the temporal patterns of human communication.