Tanka : xaeaxed?

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a study proved this
your friends have more friends than you
friendship paradox
predicts, slows epidemics
does not matter who? xaeaxed!

tanka by M. Nakazato LaFreniere

First off a definition (mindlovemisery did another Wordle — this is one word on it. Pick 10 words to do the challenge which I didn’t.). A rather obscure word.  Ok, a gamer’s word but I am putting it out there so everyone can use it because I really need this word in the dictionaries for Scrabble! It only took “amazeballs” ten years to get into a dictionary and this one is much more handy. Sleazeballs took 30 years and look how useful that one is proving. I love new words.

xaeax (prounounced ZEE-ax): to get drawn into useless circular logic from paradoxes; a state of confusion resulting from mind games

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Sociologist Scott L. Feld observed the friendship paradox in 1991.  Apparently most people have friends who have more friends than they have.  This seems to work in social networks too.  Your Pinterest follower or Facebook friends have more followers or friends than you do when you average them all.

And don’t even go into Twitter, geez. They did a study just on Twitter and yes, it’s true, your Twitter followers and especially those you follow have tons more than you do.  You want to fix this?  Go follow a Twitter person who has one follower — that’ll fix your average, laughing.  The Twitter study, very long and complicated to read actually — a lot of stats and I’m not good at stats — boiled down to — people follow people who have the same or more followers than they do. In Twitter, and most likely in the other social networks, popularity breeds popularity and we are talking thousands to millions.

looking around, counting
everybody has more friends
wonderful life, not

(This video prompt from Haiku Shuu Kan was perfect today)

What surprises me is that they can use this idea  of a friendship paradox (that all the friends of people have an average number of more friends then they do) to predict the outbreak and stages of epidemics to slow them down.

This is confusing.  How can most people have friends with more friends than they do?  Or lovers who had more exlovers than they do? (This friendship paradox applies to sex, love and money too). It creates the likelihood of a very small group out there with a huge amount of friends or exlovers. Weird thing is it’s even more true for extroverts — they too are more likely to have friends/lovers who have more friends/lovers than they do.  My mind boggles.

This makes me wonder if the people who participate in tests are likely to be unpopular or antisocial.  Or if they are more likely to remember their more popular friends when writing down who their friends are.

Thinks about this.  My facebook friends have more friends than me.  hmmmm.  My pinterest followers have more followers than me.  My blog followers have more followers than me. hmmm.  Carol has more friends than me.  Lori has more friends than me. hmmmm.  I live in a friendship paradox.  Even in Second Life, my virtual friends have more virtual friends than I do.

Thing is, though, I don’t need a lot of friends to be happy.  I like my solitude (can’t write without it) but also enjoy/appreciate my few friends. I’ve always been the sort of person who generally has one or two very close friends who I see/talk to often salted with a mix of a number of acquaintances to good friends to socialize with or engage in group activities who I see infrequently (weekly or less). I can’t maintain a shitload of people in my life — it makes me feel jangly.  A partyer I’m not.

The richness in friendship is not how many but how you enrich each other through knowing each other.  The real paradox of friendship is usually you have just as many as you need.

[Note: to unxaeax the whole issue.  Friendship paradox is due to math. It’s how the law of averages work.  If you average the (total number of friends your friends have) divided by (the total number of friends) — that’s the average.  The thing is a popular person is more likely to appear more frequently in more friendship circles so that person gets counted more often and raises the average because they have more friends.  It only takes a few popular people to inflate the average. That’s why in the Twitter study a few popular people really inflated the average because people can have tons of followers — it’s not limited by face-to-face contact.]

References:

Friendship paradox
Wikipedia

Your friends are probably more popular than you – especially if you’re an extrovert, claims study
by Ellie Zolfagharifard, Dailymail.com, April 6, 2015

Study: Your friends really are happier, more popular than you
By Caitlin Dewey, Washington Post, January 14, 2014

How the Friendship Paradox Makes Your Friends Better Than You Are
A View from Emerging Technology from the arXiv
MIT Technology Review, January 14, 2014

Why are your friends more popular than you?
by J.Pl, The Economist, April 23, 2013

Turns Out All Your Friends Have More Friends Than You
by Cari Romm, The Cut, May 19, 2016

Qualities and Inequalities in Online Social Networks through the Lens of the Generalized Friendship Paradox
by Naghmeh Momeni and Michael Rabbat, PLoS ONE 11(2): e0143633. February 10, 2016
https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0143633

Why Your Friends Have More Friends Than You Do
by Scott L. Feld, American Journal of Sociology, Vol. 96, No. 6 (May, 1991), pp. 1464-1477

Wordle #183
Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie

Haiku Shuukan #4 (’18) wonderful life
by Kristjaan Panneman, CARPE DIEM HAIKU SHUUKAN, January 15, 2018

Study
daily prompts, daily post

Cant
Sigil Information Node 00000000: The Hub

Caitlin Dewey from Washington Post wrote a couple of other interesting articles but I didn’t use them for this post — almost did — does almost count in references?
#Blessed: The Internet actually makes us happier, science says
By Caitlin Dewey, Washington Post, August 25, 2015
What a viral study about the harms of Facebook gets wrong
By Caitlin Dewey, Washington Post, November 12, 2015

photo taken in Second Life by M. LaFreniere, avatar Kayla Woodrunner visiting with her SL friend Jhan Bonde who is tons more popular than she is, lol

10 thoughts on “Tanka : xaeaxed?”

  1. Oh how that boggles the mind! I am an introvert myself and really only have one close real life friend who is also my husband so I am certainly in keeping with the research haha Sorry for the delay I usually approve pings after I read so that I do not forget to read but I had to leave for the bus to get to work before I could get out a reply to your submission

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    1. I agree totally on the boggling of the mind. I love the things that people come up with studies for.

      No worries on the delay. Totally understand. Just happy I got included.

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  2. You did a lot of research for this! Thank you! If you enjoy learning about how words are chosen, and their definitions written, for dictionaries…read Word By Word by Kory Stamper. The book was published last year and is a fun read, not boring or full of statistics.

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    1. The book sounds cool. I’m putting it on my library reserve list. There’s a hold already on it so may be a couple weeks. I love research. That’s why Google is really dangerous for me because it can set me up off on a journey who knows where

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    1. Me too. I had to look at the math a couple times to begin to visualize how it was happening. It’s interesting to me that the phenomena happens across variables and actually works to slow epidemics too. Science and human nature together is cool

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  3. Good article/blog. I’m actually on the higher side (Facebook) but not Twitter! But the Facebook thing is a ruse or more so, that they are not close personal friends. It’s all variable. But yes, Twitter is mind boggling. I’d like to read that article on stats. I like stats!

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    1. this is the full text twitter journal article
      Qualities and Inequalities in Online Social Networks through the Lens of the Generalized Friendship Paradox
      by Naghmeh Momeni and Michael Rabbat, PLoS ONE 11(2): e0143633. February 10, 2016
      https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0143633

      I don’t think they were measuring the “closeness” of friends, just who a person counted as friends. Interestingly a lot of the people who counted a very popular person as a friend was not counted as a friend on the very popular person’s friend list who counted much more popular people as friends and may not have made those lists in their turn. I also think because “closeness” isn’t counted, just friendshp/follower, that’s why the online study it becomes a number that goes up expotentially while face-to-face is more additive. But it’s also true for other things like money, lovers, publications, etc. Because I’m on the shy/introvert spectrum, I’ve noticed my friends have more friends than I do but never cared that they did. I never knew that with the Friendship Paradox that happens with everybody, lol.

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