NCBI ROFL: Dynamics of conflicts in Wikipedia.

By ncbi rofl | July 25, 2012 7:00 pm

“In this work we study the dynamical features of editorial wars in Wikipedia (WP). Based on our previously established algorithm, we build up samples of controversial and peaceful articles and analyze the temporal characteristics of the activity in these samples. On short time scales, we show that there is a clear correspondence between conflict and burstiness of activity patterns, and that memory effects play an important role in controversies. On long time scales, we identify three distinct developmental patterns for the overall behavior of the articles. We are able to distinguish cases eventually leading to consensus from those cases where a compromise is far from achievable. Finally, we analyze discussion networks and conclude that edit wars are mainly fought by few editors only.”

Bonus figure from the main text:

Figure 4. Temporal edit patterns of Lady Gaga and Homosexuality during a one month period (12/2009). The horizontal axis is time, each vertical line represents a single edit. Despite the large differences in average time intervals between successive edits, the bursty editing pattern is common to both cases.

Related content:
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NCBI ROFL is the brainchild of two Molecular and Cell Biology graduate students at UC Berkeley and features real research articles from the PubMed database (which is housed by the National Center for Biotechnology information, aka NCBI) that they find amusing (ROFL is a commonly-used internet acronym for "rolling on the floor, laughing"). Follow us on twitter: @ncbirofl

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