Mixed methods and the future of multi-modal media

by Dr. Saide Bakhshi and Dr. David A. Shamma

Humans are complex and their behaviors follow complex multi-modal patterns, however to solve many social computing problems one often looks at complexity in large-scale yet single point data sources or methodologies. While single data/single method techniques, fueled by large scale data, enjoyed some success, it is not without fault. Often with one type of data and method, all the other aspects of human behavior are overlooked, discarded, or, worse, misrepresented. We identify this as two succinct problems. First, social computing problems that cannot be solved using a single data source and need intelligence from multiple modals and, second, social behavior that cannot be fully understood using only one form of methodology. Throughout this talk, we discuss these problems and their implications, illustrate examples, and propose new directives to properly approach in the social computing research in today’s age.


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