Identifying Social Capital in Facebook
The room was full and people around me seemed to be speaking in tongues. "Yeah man Ruby on Rails is cool," a guy said on my right. Another group debated Plone versus Drupal.
Attending my first BarCamp at Red Hat's headquarters near North Carolina State years ago was confusing. Then Fred Stutzman stepped to the microphone and explained how BarCampRDU would work. Fred's language was clear, precise and easy enough for a marketing guy to understand. I should say Fred is understandable with a little work, active listening and a web connection (lol).
I got to know Fred as he finished his Ph.D. at the UNC Library School (much cooler than it sounds). Fred is an unusual combination of brains and strong communication skills. Fred explains the complicated math controlling our lives in the same clear, precise and graspable language I heard at BarCampRDU.
Identifying Social Capital in the Facebook Interface
I haven't seen Fred since he started his postdoc at Carnegie Mellon, but I follow his blog and tweets. Fred's research into the inner workings and implications of social networks should be required reading for any Internet marketer. Fred's UNC student Christian Yoder created research full of fascinating social network and by extension social marketing ideas including:
- Do men "gain" more than women from their willingness to share "private" information on Facebook?
- "3rd party visible" communication (wall posts for example) is critical to creating social capital (community creators take note).
- What are implications of Facebook's ability to bring people closer to their "weak ties"? (marketers need to influence friends and friends of friends)
If you need to understand what is happening to your business, life or love, and who doesn't, Fred Stutzman should be one of your "weak ties". I'm glad he is one of mine.
- Identifying Social Capital In the Facebook Interface Post
- Fred Stutzman Blog
- Fred on Slideshare