Six-degrees of Separation: networking projects in social networks

I have a big box in my office which contains many hundred scraps of paper with half-written research projects on them that will be pursued after the PhD is complete, and one of them is to assess whether there are more or fewer connections in the virtual world than in meatspace. I’m inspired by Duncan Watts’ book, Six Degrees: The Science of a Connected Age and Lada Adamic’s article The Small World Web, and clearly by Stanley Milgram’s (contested) Small World theory. I remember asking the venerable danah boyd if she’d ever heard of research which observed the diffusion of an innovation through a social network like MySpace. At that time, I guess about two or three years ago, she’d said no. Perhaps there are some scientific folks out there doing it now, but in the meantime, there’s a plethora of people using social networking sites like Facebook to assess their connectivity with the reset of the world. And here are a few mentioned in a recent post to the SocNet listserv:

Steve Jackson’s Six Degrees report based on his extremely popular Six Degrees of Separation Facebook group.

Kevin Bunyan’s Six Degrees experiment

The application counts the number of connections you need to make through people to get back to me. If the theory’s right then, over time, it should stay at around 6.

Six Degrees of Separation: 636 members

Once the amount of members is large enough, I will pick two random persons from the group. one will be the sender and the other one will be the recipient. the sender will be given the recipients name and will be asked to message all of his friends asking them to message and/or email all of their friends, an so on… On the other side the recipient will be notified as being the recipient and will be asked to notify if he ever receives the original message. please colaborate.

6 Degrees of Separation: 538 members

To demonstrate the “Six Degrees Theory”: I will choose 6 random people at different times (300k, 400k, 450k, 500k, 550k, 600k, 650k ,700k, 750k, 800k, 850k, 900k, 950k, 1000k) and try to connect them with me. The average degrees of separation should be no more than 6 between me and the randomly chosen subject. Obviously, 84ppl (6×14) will not be enough people to prove/disprove this theory, as the Law of Large Numbers suggests….but it’s a start. As I find more time I’ll try to connect more people. Also, keep in mind that the degrees of separation may be less than 6 for online networks and may not be a fair representation of the world. So the demonstration is limited to online networks.

Six Degrees on Facebook: Friends of friends of friends of friends…: 2116 members

INVITE ALL OF YOUR FRIENDS TO JOIN, they will inturn invite all of thier friends, who will invite all of their friends, and so on, and so forth, until we can prove the six degrees of facebook.

SIX DEGREES of Separation: 2740 members

Using the Six Degrees of Separation theory, I want to see if it’s possible to contact every single person on facebook. The theory states that everybody on this planet is separated by only six other people.

Six Degrees of Separation: 3735 members

This group was designed and created to test the theory “six degrees of seperation”. This theory states that any person on the planet can be connected to any other person on the planet through six other people or less. Not by relatives or DNA, simply by knowing people around the globe.

Six Degrees of Separation – 6 Degrees Experiment: 4152 members

Using the famous Six Degrees of Separation theory, I want to see if it’s possible to contact every single person on facebook. The theory states that everybody on this planet is separated by only six other people.

The Flickrverse from April 2005

Visualizing Online Social Networks: an ego-centric Friendster network from 2004

Brian Shaler’s map of digg friendship from 2007 and his blog


~ by aleks on May 7, 2008.

One Response to “Six-degrees of Separation: networking projects in social networks”

  1. Hi there, You have done a fantastic job. I’ll definitely digg it and personally recommend to my friends. I’m confident they’ll be benefited from this website.

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