Title: Characterising Virality on Twitter

Speaker: Amitabha Bagchi

Abstract: The emergence of online social networks and, with them, the phenomenon of "virality" wherein certain themes or pieces of content (or memes as they are known) spread explosively through the network, has attracted a lot of attention from computer science researchers in the last few years. The central problem in this area can be posed as a simple question: Can we predict which meme will go viral before it has actually gone viral? We began studying this problem by trying to identify metrics that discriminate between viral and non-viral topics and followed up by trying to actually solve the prediction problem. In this talk we will present some of the challenges that we encountered along the way and some of the results we obtained.