Limits...
Timescales of massive human entrainment.

Fusaroli R, Perlman M, Mislove A, Paxton A, Matlock T, Dale R - PLoS ONE (2015)

Bottom Line: We show that collective social behavior covaries second-by-second to the interactional dynamics of the debates: A candidate speaking induces rapid increases in mentions of his name on social media and decreases in mentions of the other candidate.Thus we demonstrate that large-scale human entrainment may hold across a number of distinct scales, in an exquisitely time-locked fashion.The methods and results pave the way for careful study of the dynamics and mechanisms of large-scale human entrainment.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Interacting Minds Centre, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark; Center for Semiotics, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark.

ABSTRACT
The past two decades have seen an upsurge of interest in the collective behaviors of complex systems composed of many agents entrained to each other and to external events. In this paper, we extend the concept of entrainment to the dynamics of human collective attention. We conducted a detailed investigation of the unfolding of human entrainment--as expressed by the content and patterns of hundreds of thousands of messages on Twitter--during the 2012 US presidential debates. By time-locking these data sources, we quantify the impact of the unfolding debate on human attention at three time scales. We show that collective social behavior covaries second-by-second to the interactional dynamics of the debates: A candidate speaking induces rapid increases in mentions of his name on social media and decreases in mentions of the other candidate. Moreover, interruptions by an interlocutor increase the attention received. We also highlight a distinct time scale for the impact of salient content during the debates: Across well-known remarks in each debate, mentions in social media start within 5-10 seconds after it occurs; peak at approximately one minute; and slowly decay in a consistent fashion across well-known events during the debates. Finally, we show that public attention after an initial burst slowly decays through the course of the debates. Thus we demonstrate that large-scale human entrainment may hold across a number of distinct scales, in an exquisitely time-locked fashion. The methods and results pave the way for careful study of the dynamics and mechanisms of large-scale human entrainment.

Show MeSH

Related in: MedlinePlus

Tweet rate and turn-taking during the presidential debates.Light red and blue rectangles are periods of time during which candidates were speaking during the debates. Darker red and blue dots represent per-second tweet rate mentioning the corresponding candidates. Visual inspect reveals relatively periodic patterns of Twitter mentions that seem to be cued by turn onset. Plots include both tweets and retweets in the tweet / s rate.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4400172&req=5

pone.0122742.g002: Tweet rate and turn-taking during the presidential debates.Light red and blue rectangles are periods of time during which candidates were speaking during the debates. Darker red and blue dots represent per-second tweet rate mentioning the corresponding candidates. Visual inspect reveals relatively periodic patterns of Twitter mentions that seem to be cued by turn onset. Plots include both tweets and retweets in the tweet / s rate.

Mentions: The audio recordings and transcripts of the three debates between President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney were collected from National Public Radio (www.npr.org). The transcripts were cleaned and edited to better reflect the audio files. Through careful listening supplemented by an in-depth examination of the waveform and automated analysis of variations in pitch and intensity using Praat [44] and MATLAB (Mathworks Inc.), we individuated start and end time at a 10-millisecond scale for each speech turn as well as interruptions and a selection of salient moments discussed in popular media after the debate events (see Fig. 1). This was performed blind from any inspection of the Twitter data (see below). By identifying the precise timestamp of the debate onset, we time-aligned the Twitter data and the debate data (see Fig. 2).


Timescales of massive human entrainment.

Fusaroli R, Perlman M, Mislove A, Paxton A, Matlock T, Dale R - PLoS ONE (2015)

Tweet rate and turn-taking during the presidential debates.Light red and blue rectangles are periods of time during which candidates were speaking during the debates. Darker red and blue dots represent per-second tweet rate mentioning the corresponding candidates. Visual inspect reveals relatively periodic patterns of Twitter mentions that seem to be cued by turn onset. Plots include both tweets and retweets in the tweet / s rate.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4400172&req=5

pone.0122742.g002: Tweet rate and turn-taking during the presidential debates.Light red and blue rectangles are periods of time during which candidates were speaking during the debates. Darker red and blue dots represent per-second tweet rate mentioning the corresponding candidates. Visual inspect reveals relatively periodic patterns of Twitter mentions that seem to be cued by turn onset. Plots include both tweets and retweets in the tweet / s rate.
Mentions: The audio recordings and transcripts of the three debates between President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney were collected from National Public Radio (www.npr.org). The transcripts were cleaned and edited to better reflect the audio files. Through careful listening supplemented by an in-depth examination of the waveform and automated analysis of variations in pitch and intensity using Praat [44] and MATLAB (Mathworks Inc.), we individuated start and end time at a 10-millisecond scale for each speech turn as well as interruptions and a selection of salient moments discussed in popular media after the debate events (see Fig. 1). This was performed blind from any inspection of the Twitter data (see below). By identifying the precise timestamp of the debate onset, we time-aligned the Twitter data and the debate data (see Fig. 2).

Bottom Line: We show that collective social behavior covaries second-by-second to the interactional dynamics of the debates: A candidate speaking induces rapid increases in mentions of his name on social media and decreases in mentions of the other candidate.Thus we demonstrate that large-scale human entrainment may hold across a number of distinct scales, in an exquisitely time-locked fashion.The methods and results pave the way for careful study of the dynamics and mechanisms of large-scale human entrainment.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Interacting Minds Centre, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark; Center for Semiotics, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark.

ABSTRACT
The past two decades have seen an upsurge of interest in the collective behaviors of complex systems composed of many agents entrained to each other and to external events. In this paper, we extend the concept of entrainment to the dynamics of human collective attention. We conducted a detailed investigation of the unfolding of human entrainment--as expressed by the content and patterns of hundreds of thousands of messages on Twitter--during the 2012 US presidential debates. By time-locking these data sources, we quantify the impact of the unfolding debate on human attention at three time scales. We show that collective social behavior covaries second-by-second to the interactional dynamics of the debates: A candidate speaking induces rapid increases in mentions of his name on social media and decreases in mentions of the other candidate. Moreover, interruptions by an interlocutor increase the attention received. We also highlight a distinct time scale for the impact of salient content during the debates: Across well-known remarks in each debate, mentions in social media start within 5-10 seconds after it occurs; peak at approximately one minute; and slowly decay in a consistent fashion across well-known events during the debates. Finally, we show that public attention after an initial burst slowly decays through the course of the debates. Thus we demonstrate that large-scale human entrainment may hold across a number of distinct scales, in an exquisitely time-locked fashion. The methods and results pave the way for careful study of the dynamics and mechanisms of large-scale human entrainment.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus