Modelling the Spread of Rumours in Complex Social Networks

A while back Mazir gave an interesting talk whose abstract is below. One of the directions of future research is to model the spread of rumours in a web of trust. That might be of interest to some of us.

Rumours are an important form of social communications, and their
spreading plays a significant role in a variety of human affairs. Standard
models of rumours do not take into account the topology of the
underlying social interaction networks along which rumours spread. In
this talk I introduce a new stochastic model for the spread of rumours
in large-scale online social networks which are characterized by highly
complex connectivity patterns. I derive a set of mean-field equations
for the dynamics of the model on such networks and use analytical and
numerical solutions of these equations to examine the critical
properties and dynamics of rumour spreading on several models of
complex social networks.

2 Responses to “Modelling the Spread of Rumours in Complex Social Networks”

  1. mike says:

    Interesting model – the rate of rumour spreading is the same for every link, so a node’s “rumour bandwidth” is proportional to its degree. That might be realistic – maybe people with more friends do spend more time talking – but I wonder what would happen if all nodes had the same bandwidth, ie if the rate of rumour spreading on each link was divided by the node’s degree. Would that reduce the influence of high-degree nodes, making the results in scale-free networks more similar to the results in random networks?