What's in a Name? Understanding the Interplay between Titles, Content, and Communities in Social Media

author: Himabindu Lakkaraju, Computer Science Department, Stanford University
published: April 3, 2014,   recorded: July 2013,   views: 1982

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Creating, placing, and presenting social media content is a difficult problem. In addition to the quality of the content itself, several factors such as the way the content is presented (the title), the community it is posted to, whether it has been seen before, and the time it is posted determine its success. There are also interesting interactions between these factors. For example, the language of the title should be targeted to the community where the content is submitted, yet it should also highlight the distinctive nature of the content. In this paper, we examine how these factors interact to determine the popularity of social media content. We do so by studying resubmissions, i.e., content that has been submitted multiple times, with multiple titles, to multiple different communities. Such data allows us to ‘tease apart’ the extent to which each factor influences the success of that content. The models we develop help us understand how to better target social media content: by using the right title, for the right community, at the right time.

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