Facebook at Work – Analytics is Your Excuse

Slicing and Dicing Social Networks – This should give you some ammo to get Facebook unbanned at work. And start to build a business case for maximising the network. A few cool social networks analytics apps are appearing on Facebook, stealer of souls and jobs. Socialistics, Interactive Friends Chart and Friend Wheel are three.

Socialistics mashes up your community into visual representations (tag cloud, pie charts) to help you better understand you (and your friends) networks. Huge potential here. We’ll see more Company networks- probably closed, must use company email address to join – who apply Socialistics. The only thing is, do you really want the sales department ringing you, asking you to help them present to evil Cousin Kylie who broke your favourite Tiny Tears doll, who happens to be purchasing manager at XYZ company? 😛

Also remember, this is initially a public tool. If you dont’ want people poking around, don’t install it (you can’t hide it and just use it as a private tool, as far as I can see).

Socialistics, is a social insight tool. This means it provides integrated analysis of your friends and networks.

All graphs are a reflection of stats relating to your friends.

But more interestingly Socialistics creates detailed tag clouds that are a reflection of you and your relationships with people in your networks.

This isn’t Top Friends. It’s much more. It’s an attempt to start understanding who you are within the network you operate within.

Have Fun!

And we have the popularity cloud:

The Popularity Cloud Illustration of popularity within personal network, indication of personal proximity and thus arguably personal relevance. Those closest to you, should be the ones most prominent.

This is what it looks like:
There’s a bunch of bar/pie charts you can construct. Is it only me, or does everyone find this sort of analysis really deeply sexy?

The chart above is Companies in my social network. I’m guessing it works best if you have a fair number of Facebook friends – I’m running at about 200 atm (at the moment). And I agree, with Techlightenment : (the developers) much more useful than Top Friends.

Here’s some other 3rd party apps for you to play with
Interactive Friends Graph

(above)There’s Duncan Riley – *waves*- and his links to me and others.

The last one, Friend Wheel, shows me that I have 190 friends and 588 connections.

I haven’t linked to ’em all but feel free to view them on my profile page at Facebook.

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7 Comments

  1. Semantics Matt dear, sexy = excited and intrigued. For me anyway. 😛

    This reminds me of the walled garden vs gated community debate. Or, Corporates locking down ‘their’ content vs Members controlling their own information. We tend not to trust Microsoft or our employer with our social network unless there is a benefit to us, the employee/member, and we can control it. I’m not handing over Cousin Kylie without 1) having a say-so and 2) being able to play with some cool tools in return. Kids stuff. 😛

    And yes, Optimice are brilliant – as a matter of fact, they are holding a workshop at the Enterprise 2.0 conference I am chairing next week. I can’t wait!

  2. Laurel – “sexy” is the wrong word for my reaction to these analytics but, yes, the do get me excited & intrigued.

    The thing is – corporate specific tools like Visible Path have been trying to do this for the last few years. Microsoft have a tool that does something similar based your email directory.

    They haven’t taken off for lots of reasons – often involving trust but also the “Evil Cousin Kylie” issue. Just because the system says a link is there, doesn’t mean that it is leverageable by just anyone.

    The absolute don in Social Network Analysis in Australia is Laurie Lock-Lee. Let me just pimp his company for a moment. And I don’t even have shares in it.

  3. Hey! You invite me down for a visit and introduce me to all your friends right now! I cannot stand being so relatively unpopular in that first metric!

    Or come up here and meet all my friends. One of the two.

    Exiting and Intriguing,

    Jim

  4. Excellent. Geeks spent decades being paranoid about Them In The Black Helicopters monitoring us and building profiles of our friends and interests. Now we’re building the whole global surveillance system thing ourselves. We’re twittering every move of our lives. On unencrypted links. Through servers run by people we don’t know, and who have no accountability. Because it’s “sexy”.

    Funny, eh?

    (Yes, I’m about to read your post on the unIndustry Organisation and the Bill of Rights .)

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