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Journal cover: Online Information Review

Online Information Review

ISSN: 1468-4527

Online from: 1977

Subject Area: Library and Information Studies

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Utilising social network analysis to study the characteristics and functions of the co-occurrence network of online tags


Document Information:
Title:Utilising social network analysis to study the characteristics and functions of the co-occurrence network of online tags
Author(s):Ma Feicheng, (Centre for Studies of Information Resources, Wuhan University, Wuhan, People's Republic of China), Li Yating, (Centre for Studies of Information Resources, Wuhan University, Wuhan, People's Republic of China)
Citation:Ma Feicheng, Li Yating, (2014) "Utilising social network analysis to study the characteristics and functions of the co-occurrence network of online tags", Online Information Review, Vol. 38 Iss: 2, pp.232 - 247
Keywords:CiteULike, Folksonomy, Recommendation, Social network analysis, Social tagging, Tag co-occurrence network
Article type:Research paper
DOI:10.1108/OIR-11-2012-0124 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Acknowledgements:This study was partially supported by the National Natural Foundation of China (Grant No. 71173249). The authors are grateful for the translation support from Ruan Lin, who teaches in the School of Foreign Languages and Literature at Wuhan University.
Abstract:

Purpose – This paper aims to explore the characteristics of the co-occurrence network of online tags and propose new approaches of applying social network analysis by utilising social tagging in order to organise data.

Design/methodology/approach – The authors collected online resources labelled “tag” from 7 November 2004 to 31 October 2011 from the CiteULike website, comprising 684 papers and their URLs, titles and data on tagging (users, times, and tags). They examined the co-occurrence network of online tags by using the analyses of social networks, including the analysis of coherence, the analysis of centricity and core to periphery categorical analysis.

Findings – Some features of the co-occurrence of online tags are as follows: the internet is subject to the “small world” phenomenon, as well as being “scale-free”. The structure of the internet reflects stable areas of core knowledge. In addition to five possible applications of social network analysis, social tagging has the greatest significance in organising online resources.

Originality/value – This research finds that co-occurrence of tags online is an effective way to organise and index data. Some suggestions are provided on the organisation of online resources.



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