Professor Himelboim Explains the Applications and Challenges for the Big Data Analysis of Social Media in Taiwan

This month the TIGCR, the NCCU College of Communication and the ITSA invited Dr. Itai Himelboim of the Department of Advertising & Public Relations of the Grady College of Journalism & Mass Communication at the University of Georgia to Chengchih University for a visit and exchange.

During his visit to Taiwan, Dr. Himelboim gave two open lectures at the College of Communication on June 11th and 12th, then attended our center on the 16th. He discussed his experience at the Social Media Engagement & Evaluation Suite (SEE) at the University of Georgia, as well as introducing data types and analysis methods for big data. 

">Having abundant experience in the field of social network research, Dr. Himelboim stated definitively at the start of the conference that how to get the data is not as important for a researcher as what data to look for, and that only by sensitivity to the object of analysis can a researcher accurately apprehend data that is truly meaningful to the research. Dr. Himelboim also introduced the peculiarities of social media data and different levels of analysis. He also identified structured data such as gender, location, and the number of followers, forms of data that are easier to categorize.  Conversations such as tweets or messages in social media are typical forms of unstructured data. These not only difficult to categorize according to the meaning of their content, but are quite often lost with time.

Dr. Himelboim explains big data in social media.

(Photo credit: TIGCR)

Privacy policies for social media may be facing problems and challenges with the use of big data. Considering Facebook, which has the highest usage among the Taiwanese public, Dr. Himelboim expressed that compared to personal pages that contain relatively more private information, public fan pages do not suffer such limitations for accessing data, and strategies must likewise be adjusted during data searches and in the selection of key words.

TIGCR members listen to Dr. Himelboim’s lecture.

(Photo credit: TIGCR)

Dr. Himelboim is asked about his experience researching big data in social media.

(Photo credit: TIGCR)