The Socialization of the WWW

. Thursday, April 23, 2009
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This year, WWW2009 is being held in Madrid, a great event and a great place to celebrate the 20th Aniversary of the WWW. The WWW Conference is a great place to study the current opportunities and problems on the Web setup, and that’s why I use to read the abstracts of the accepted papers each years. And there is a visible evolution towards the Social Web in the last 3 years.

In WWW 2007 at Banff (Canada), there was no Social track, only a session called “Mining in Social Networks” under Data Mining track, were 3 papers were presented, but addressing Social Networks as a general paradigm of communication among people. WWW 2008 at Beining (China) had a Social Networks track, containing 3 sessions: “Analysis of Social Networks and Online Interaction Spaces”, “Discovery and Evolution of Communities” and “Applications and Infrastructures for Web 2.0”, and some other papers addressing Social Media as “Finding the Right Facts in the Crowd: Factoid Question Answering over Social Media”.

WWW 2009 clearly shows that the Web is Social. There exist a “Social Networks and Web 2.0” track addressing Social Media and Collaborative Web, with 4 sessions (Recommender Systems, Interactions in Social Communities, Difusion and Search in Social Networks and Photos and Web 2.0) and 12 papers, but there are also, at least, 5 papers in other tracks that address other relevant topics like privacy from a Social Media point of view:
More than 12% of the papers accepted in WWW2009 are related to Social Media, and that’s a very good symptom of the Socialization of the Web.