Led it on Reddit: An exploratory study examining opinion leadership on Reddit

Danielle K Kilgo, Joseph J. Yoo, Vinicio Sinta, Stephanie Geise, Melissa Suran, Thomas J Johnson

Abstract


Is it possible to identify opinion leaders in a semi-anonymous online network? To answer this question, this study examines the social news site Reddit to determine whether opinion leadership can be recognized in an online network that, at face value, does not allow users to associate with their off-line personas. Identifiable characteristics, such as commenting, longevity, karma scores, posting frequency, and posting scores were analyzed. Results indicate that semi-anonymous opinion leadership may exist, as several users appear frequently as top-voted posters and commenters. In addition, Reddit’s reputational value karma may help users and researchers identify opinion leaders.


Keywords


opinion leadership; Reddit; social networking; annonymity; social media

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5210/fm.v21i9.6429



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