Wednesday, August 31st, 2022

Modeling Conflict in Social Media | 10th Anniversary Symposium

In our SimonsTV corner this summer, we're sharing some of our favorite talks from our 10th Anniversary Symposium, which was held in Berkeley at the end of May.

Prasad Raghavendra writes, "The conference kicked off with Jon Kleinberg’s talk on modeling conflict in social media. It wasn’t about the conflicts that have become endemic on social media, but about the internal conflict within ourselves as the users of social media. In particular, it is the conflict between the part of us that tells us what we want to do, and the part of us that tells us what we should do. Jon drove home the point with the example of eating chips (what we want) versus eating salad (what we should be doing). For a designer of social media, it is easy to cater to the short-term wants of users as expressed through their choices. This is akin to the host refilling the chip bowl every time it gets empty at a party. While this might drive user engagement in the short term, it runs the risk of losing users altogether in the longer term. Jon considered the question of how one could model this internal conflict and design systems that can cater to the 'should' part of our internal selves."