Clemson University

School of Computing Seminar with Tim Weninger, University of Notre Dame

"Fact, Fiction, and the Newsfeed - Artificial Promotion and the Attention Economy"
People increasingly rely on social media as their primary source of news and information. Although social media platforms differ in the way that information is curated and delivered, user ratings (likes, upvotes, pins) play a significant role in determining what is considered to be popular or trending. Tasked with curating an ever-increasing amount of content, providers leverage the collective ratings of the crowd to identify which content to show users. Unfortunately, these types of systems can be easily abused by malicious agents through rating spam and a new type of digital-astroturfing. In this talk, we will discuss the algorithmic and social mechanisms that drive this misbehavior and the recent work that is guiding social media platforms towards more reliable social rating systems.
Tim Weninger is an Assistant Professor at the University of Notre Dame where he directs the Data Science Group and is a member of the Interdisciplinary Center for Networks Science and Applications (ICENSA). He has authored over 60 research publications in the areas of social media, machine learning and network science. The key application of his research is to identify how humans generate, curate and search for information in the pursuit of knowledge. He uses properties of these emergent networks to reason about the nature of relatedness, membership and other abstract and physical phenomena. He is a recipient of the NSF CAREER award, the Army Research Office Young Faculty Award, and has received research grants from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, DARPA, and the John Templeton Foundation. He is an inaugural member of the ACM's Future of Computing Academy and serves on numerous scientific program committees and editorial boards.

Friday, April 12 at 2:30pm to 3:30pm

McAdams Hall, 114
821 McMillan Rd., Clemson, SC 29634, USA

Event Type

Lectures / Seminars / Speakers


College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences, School of Computing, Research Seminars

Target Audience

Students, Faculty


Contact Name:

Dida Weeks

Contact Phone:


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