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mapping flickr group activity

September 20, 2009 Leave a comment

flickr group activity visualization

Mapping the activity levels of approx 1,500 Flickr groups against the number of members of each group, using the Flickr API.

The x axis is the group size, the y axis is the number of seconds an image can expect to stay on the ‘front page’. This was measured as the timestamp difference between the 1st and 13th images in the pool (the landing page for a group shows 12 images; the user has to follow a link to show more).

Note that the image is a log-log plot, as the groups follow a power-law distribution.

Groups in the bottom right are the busiest – this includes the B&W and FlickrCentral groups. Groups in the top right have lots of members but are more vigorously moderated, so images are added to the pool more slowly (or new submissions are deleted). The group touching the bottom of the graph is the “10 million images” group, where users are encouraged to “dump and run”.

This is a hexbin plot – the colour represents the number of groups falling within a certain range of values. Red=Lots, Green=Fewer, Blue=Few.

As you’d expect, larger groups tend to have a higher turnaround of images, but there’s a lot of variation.

The most common group size seems to be around 2000-3000 members; a group this size, you can expect an image to stay on the front page for around 2-3 hours. With the largest groups, this drops to around 5 minutes.

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