Mark, Gloria, Mossaab Bagdouri, Leysia Palen, James H. Martin, Ban Al-Ani, Ken Anderson (2012). Blogs as a Collective War Diary. 2012 ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work, Bellevue, WA.
Sarcevic, Aleskandra, Leysia Palen, Joanne White, Mossaab Bagdouri, Kate Starbird, Kenneth M. Anderson, (2012). “Beacons of Hope” in Decentralized Coordination: Learning from On-the-Ground Medical Twitterers During the 2010 Haiti Earthquake 2012 ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work, Bellevue, WA.
Starbird, Kate and Leysia Palen. “Voluntweeters:” Self-Organizing by Digital Volunteers in Times of Crisis. In the ACM 2011 Conference on Computer Human Interaction (CHI 2011), Vancouver, BC, Canada, long paper, pp. TBA.
This empirical study of “digital volunteers” in the aftermath of the January 12, 2010 Haiti earthquake describes their behaviors and mechanisms of self-organizing in the information space of a microblogging environment, where collaborators were newly found and distributed across continents. The paper explores the motivations, resources, activities and products of digital volunteers. It describes how seemingly small features of the technical environment offered structure for self-organizing, while considering how the social-technical milieu enabled individual capacities and collective action. Using social theory about selforganizing, the research offers insight about features of coordination within a setting of massive interaction.
Corvey, W. J., Vieweg, S., Rood, T. and Palmer, M. (2010). Twitter in Mass Emergency: What NLP Techniques can Contribute. In Proceedings of the NAACL HLT 2010 Workshop on Computational Linguistics in a World of Social Media (Los Angeles, California, June 2010), 23–24.
We detail methods for entity span identification and entity class annotation of Twitter communications that take place during times of mass emergency. We present our motivation, method and preliminary results.
Liu, S. B. and Ayala Iacucci, A. (2010). Crisis Map Mashups in a Participatory Age. American Congress on Surveying and Mapping (ACSM) Bulletin, June 2010, pp. 10-14.
Liu, S. B., Anahi Ayala Iacucci and Patrick Meier. (2010). Ushahidi Haiti and Chile: Next Generation Crisis Mapping. American Congress on Surveying and Mapping (ACSM) Bulletin, August Issue, pp. 10-13.
Liu, S. B. and Palen, L. (2010). The New Cartographers: Crisis Map Mashups and the Emergence of Neogeographic Practice. Cartography and Geographic Information Science (CaGIS) Journal Special Issue on Mapping Hazards and Disasters, Volume 37, Number 1, pp. 69-90.
Crisis situations are ripe for expansion of the neogeographer population and skill set. We qualitatively examine the design and creation of crisis map mashups to describe emergent neogeographic practices in this particular domain. We analyze the circumstances that led to their creation, data selection, and design choices vis-à-vis spatial and temporal information representation. We then discuss the implications of emergent neogeographic practice based on two case examples, which illustrate the merging of professional and participatory geotechnologies, and the opportunity a blending of the two provides for widespread cartographic literacy.
Palen, L., Starbird, K., Vieweg, S. and Hughes, A. (2010). Twitter-based information distribution during the 2009 Red River Valley flood threat. Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, American Society for Information Science and Technology, Volume 36, Issue 5, (June/July 2010), pp. 13-17
Starbird, K., Palen, L., Hughes, A. L., and Vieweg, S. (2010). Chatter on the Red: What hazards threat reveals about the social life of microblogged information. In Proceedings of the 2010 ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work (Savannah, Georgia, USA, February 06 – 10, 2010). CSCW 2010. ACM, New York, NY, 241-250. Nominated for “Best of CSCW.”
This paper considers a subset of the computer-mediated communication (CMC) that took place during the flooding of the Red River Valley in the US and Canada in March and April 2009. Focusing on the use of Twitter, a microblogging service, we identified mechanisms of information production, distribution, and organization. The Red River event resulted in a rapid generation of Twitter communications by numerous sources using a variety of communications forms, including autobiographical and mainstream media reporting, among other types. We examine the social life of microblogged information, identifying generative, synthetic, derivative and innovative properties that sustain the broader system of interaction. The landscape of Twitter is such that the production of new information is supported through derivative activities of directing, relaying, synthesizing, and redistributing, and is additionally complemented by socio-technical innovation. These activities comprise self-organization of information.
Vieweg, Sarah, Amanda Hughes, Kate Starbird, Leysia Palen (2010). Microblogging During Two Natural Hazards Events: What Twitter May Contribute to Situational Awareness. In Proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (Atlanta, Georgia, USA, April 10 – 15, 2010). CHI 2010. ACM, New York, NY, 1079-1088
We analyze microblog posts generated during two recent, concurrent emergency events in North America via Twitter, a popular microblogging service. We focus on communications broadcast by people who were “on the ground” during the Oklahoma Grassfires of April 2009 and the Red River Floods that occurred in March and April 2009, and identify information that may contribute to enhancing situational awareness (SA). This work aims to inform next steps for extracting useful, relevant information during emergencies using information extraction (IE) technique.
Shklovski, I., Palen, L., and Sutton, J. (2008). Finding Community Through Information and Communication Technology in Disaster Events (long paper). In the 2008 ACM Proceedings of Computer Supported Cooperative Work Conference.
Disasters affect not only the welfare of individuals and family groups, but also the well-being of communities, and can serve as a catalyst for innovative uses of information and communication technology (ICT). In this paper, we present evidence of ICT use for re-orientation toward the community and for the production of public goods in the form of information dissemination during disasters. Results from this study of information seeking practices by members of the public during the October 2007 Southern California wildfires suggest that ICT use provides a means for communicating community-relevant information especially when members become geographically dispersed, leveraging and even building community resources in the process. In the presence of pervasive ICT, people are developing new practices for emergency response by using ICT to address problems that arise from information dearth and geographical dispersion. In doing so, they find community by reconnecting with others who share their concern for the locale threatened by the hazard.
Sutton, J., Palen, L., and Shklovski, I. (2008). Backchannels on the Front Lines: Emergent Use of Social Media in the 2007 Southern California Fires. Proceedings of the Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management Conference (ISCRAM 2008). *
Opportunities for participation by members of the public are expanding the information arena of disaster. Social media supports “backchannel” communications, allowing for wide-scale interaction that can be collectively resourceful, self-policing, and generative of information that is otherwise hard to obtain. Results from our study of information practices by members of the public during the October 2007 Southern California Wildfires suggest that community information resources and other backchannel communications activity enabled by social media are gaining prominence in the disaster arena, despite concern by officials about the legitimacy of information shared through such means. We argue that these emergent uses of social media are pre-cursors of broader future changes to the institutional and organizational arrangements of disaster response.