Impact of entity disambiguation errors on social network properties

Jana Diesner, Craig S. Evans, Jinseok Kim

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Entities in social networks may be subject to consolidation when they are inconsistently indexed, and subject to splitting when multiple entities share the same name. How much do errors or shortfalls in entity disambiguation distort network properties? We show empirically how network analysis results and derived implications can tremendously change depending solely on entity resolution techniques. We present a series of controlled experiments where we vary disambiguation accuracy to study error propagation and the robustness of common network metrics, topologies and key players. Our results suggest that for email data, not conducting deduplication, e.g. when operating on the level of email addressed instead of individuals, can make organizational communication networks appear to be less coherent and integrated as well as bigger than they truly are. For copublishing networks, improper merging as caused by the commonly used initial based disambiguation techniques can make a scientific sector seem more dense and cohesive than it really is, and individual authors appear to be more productive, collaborative and diversified than they actually are. Disambiguation errors can also lead to the false detection of power law distributions of node degree; suggesting preferential attachment processes that might not apply.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 9th International Conference on Web and Social Media, ICWSM 2015
PublisherAAAI Press
Pages81-90
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781577357339
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015
Event9th International Conference on Web and Social Media, ICWSM 2015 - Oxford, United Kingdom
Duration: May 26 2015May 29 2015

Publication series

NameProceedings of the 9th International Conference on Web and Social Media, ICWSM 2015

Other

Other9th International Conference on Web and Social Media, ICWSM 2015
CountryUnited Kingdom
CityOxford
Period5/26/155/29/15

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications

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