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September 29, 2006


Mitch Ratcliffe

Good points all, and the team at BuzzLogic is seeking to identify many faces of influence, but we've found it is best to start with the aspects most familiar to the market and let them digest those. That said, we're addressing both the models you suggest are necessary, providing, for lack of a better description, a meme-level tracking component that shows the rising and falling occurrence of an idea as well as the node-influence of an author like Jeff Jarvis (BuzzLogic's birth came from a pre-Dell Jarvis encounter by a friend of mine, btw).

"Within a timeframe" is an absolutely key notion, we agree. Our system provides longitudinal analysis of user-defined timeframes, not just an atemporal view of the network.

But we also have discovered that within those 1,000 hypothetical posters, whether on LiveJournal or across multiple sites, there are parties that lead the movement, so to speak, and others who spread the message. To some degree there are patterns that repeat within those large phenomena that can be used to identify where to participate as a marketer. That is not to say, however, that the same people always play the same role, rather statistically it is possible to identify within those movements who is currently taking a leadership role.

Jeff Jarvis

As much as I would love to be canonical -- just because it sounds so important -- I will have to argue that the Dell saga was really just a coming together of your fabled 1,000 Livejournalers. I have a small public. The proportion of that public, that regular circle of readers and writers, who had Dell problems was even tinier. And I have long argued with absolutely no false modesty, if I do say so myself, that I was not an influencer on Dell. I was merely a convenient point of coalescence. There were 1,000 metaphoric Livejournalers out there, all tearing their hair out at Dell, and they were floating around, waiting -- whether the knew it or not -- for the chance to join together with other miserable sods suffering the same headache. I merely happened along. Links led to links. And an army was formed, almost instantly. This had nothing to do with me or with my small cadre of media blathering friends. It has everything to do with atoms attracting into molecules; it's a magnetic effect I hope I'll soon see in a time-based view of one of your maps: The making of a meme.

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