Tuesday, November 21, 2006

My Presentation

Here's a little post so that you all can comment about my presentation.

A few things I'm thinking about and would love feedback on:
-Should I use a confederate as person B in the experiment? I have many hesitations, but I know there would be benefits too.
-Should I use some kind of task for their conversation? Would an introduction/biographical task work?
Or is there anything else important I didn't cover?

Thanks!

16 Comments:

At 3:02 PM, Blogger alexkresovich said...

First of all, I'd like to emphasize how great I thought your example was. You couldn't have picked a more stand-up, intelligent, friendly, and likeable person than the one you chose.

On a side note, I really liked your presentation. I thought you did a really good job of explaining the situation you are looking at with the asymmetric flow of information and you did a very good job of fleshing out your hypotheses (especially with the three ways people present the information that they know). I think your findings next semester should be very interesting and you did a very good job of setting up your study. Good job.

 
At 4:55 PM, Blogger Amanda Pearsall said...

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At 4:58 PM, Blogger Amanda Pearsall said...

First of all, congratulations again on your engagement.
I found your presentation very enlightening for a couple of reasons. For one, if we were to critique your presentation, you did a great job of capturing the attention of your audience. Alex definitely woke up from his daydreaming.
Secondly, you really made me think about asymmetric information. You raise an interesting point that individuals who post information out there, online, are surprised when someone makes use of that information. My concern in your actual experiment is that by asking an individual to look at someones profile you are giving a red-flag that they should really acquaint themselves with the information provided. However, in reality when we consider the web, and a program like Facebook, we must consider all the noise surrounding the content of each profile. I think this brings into question whether we as Facebook users are passive or active in our use. Yes, the information may be there, and an individual may even read it at one time or another, but does this really mean that they will remember it, recall it, and use it in future interaction? It would be interesting to me if you provided more than one profile so that you could see how an individual will pick what information to use in their interaction and what to keep out. It is important that you really consider why people use a program like Facebook. Do people go on there to find information or rather to just confirm their initial beliefs, after they meet a person?
Overall, your study raises a number of interesting points. Keep up the great work and I’m excited to see what your future study reveals about asymmetric information. Have a great break and a Happy Thanksgiving!

 
At 8:09 PM, Blogger Brad Hill said...

I thought your presentation was well directed and all the information flowed into your planned experiment. I think your idea in general is an interesting one in that it explores the overlap between FtF communication and CMC. It is very hard for people to forget information, so to the extent it has been made available to them prior to a conversation it must affect the conversation.

I thought your point about the fact people put information out and don't really expect people to look at it was well taken. I am certainly guilty of such. I assume some people might notice it in passing, but I don't imagine someone lifting information from my profile and using it at a later time. Well done.

I think using a confederate in your experiment might allow you deeper incite into the type of information people use. If you had the same profile that people relied upon to get the confederate to like them you might find patterns of the types of information that is most commonly selected or relied upon in conversation.

 
At 10:14 PM, Blogger Shane said...

Kate -- I thought you did a nice job of explaining and outlining the basis for your work. It was nice to have an example in there that offered the class a great way of understanding the implications and meaning behind your work (we all know how much Alex appreciated it). Your presentation, overall, was very simple, which was good, I thought. It wasn't overly difficult to understand and you did a good job of explaining your concepts of asymmetric communication in terms of having prior knowledge from "facebook stalking." Not sure if I can offer any advice on the confederate issue.

Good luck with your research next semester. Be sure to update us all on it!

 
At 10:18 PM, Blogger Nicole said...

Kate, I think you did a good job on the presentation, and I think your topic is very interesting. Finding out how people use thefacebook and other online methods to find information about others is going to be very important int he future, because I am sure the phenomenon will only grow. I think a confederate would be good to use because a participant might get confused and mess up, which could screw with your results. I also think having them do a task is a good idea, because they will probably not be as suspicious as they would be if you were just to show one of them a facebook profile. Overall, good job, and congratulations on your engagement.

 
At 2:02 AM, Blogger Corey Ryan Earle said...

Very interesting topic and presentation, especially since its something that I think everyone experiences frequently, on both side sof the asymmetrical information. I know I've done some minor Facebook stalking before meeting people in person, and although I don't remember using the asymmetric information directly, I bet I incorporated it into some probing questions or hinting statements.
I think your paper could briefly discuss the various ways people receive asymmetric information besides just online (Facebook, MySpace, Google), like through friends or resumes, etc.
Also, what are the consequences of this? Can having asymmetric information have negative results? What are the ethical implications? If it's deceptive, is it bad? Are all three strategies for having asymmetric information deceptive? It seems like the first two could be, but I don't think the third is.
As we discussed in class, using Alex as your example was an excellent way to get things started and grab audience interest.
Oh, and congrats on the engagement. Pretty exciting.

 
At 12:25 PM, Blogger Robin Kornet said...

Awesome job! I think your topic is really interesting and something very applicable to all college students who use facebook as a source of information. Although many of us, as you expect, would never say “Your facebook profile says …” it would be really interesting to understand how this information is used amongst facebook users. It was really great how you used Alex, considering all of us know him pretty well. You did a great job breaking down the information that could be found in one’s facebook profile and used during a face-to-face interaction. I think a theory that you may have already used, but would be very applicable to your topic is the Uncertainty Reduction Theory. I think that Facebook has become an uncertainty reduction tool in that users, who are seeking information about others, look for similarities via facebook profiles. It would be very interesting if you look at freshman for your study as I suggested during class. The reason I think freshman would be so interesting is because they are likely to be curious and perhaps nervous to learn who they will be living with, who they will be taking classes with, etc.
If you do pursue your study next semester it would be really cool if you used a confederate. I would be very interested in your results.
Overall, really great job! You have a really good topic. Good luck on your final paper!

 
At 2:25 PM, Blogger Cameron Hall said...

I really like how you used Alex as and example. It was a great idea to use someone in the class because we can all relate to it. I believe when you look at someone’s profile now, it will highlight information that you have in common. Do you think this would affect your research or how the information is strategically released? I like your hypothesizes, but for the 3rd is it really a strategic thought our strategy? Similar to that Catalina said, isn’t this sort of thing acceptable among friends. I had and interaction last week that would align with the third strategy. I was asked if it was my 21st birthday and after a response of no, it was explained that the assumption was due to something they saw on facebook. As for your experiment, do you think synchronicity have an affect. Meaning that asking someone to do this right after viewing your information could differ significantly from waiting a day or a week in between. I think it would also be helpful to include just how common this behavior is. I have never used facebook information it to start a conversation or to get someone to like me. Possibly after your experiment you can ask them if they use similar techniques in real life. Good job overall.

 
At 5:26 PM, Blogger Barrett Amos said...

Kate,

As Alex said, I think you picked a very relevant example. We are all better off for having been able to stalk his profile on a large projector screen in front of the entire class. Examples aside, you gave a solid, clear, and coherent presentation. Nice job!

I have been going back and forth on the confederate issue. On one hand I believe that using a confederate would make your study a lot more controllable and you might be able to see any effects of asymmetric information more clearly. At the same time, a confederate’s Facebook profile may give away too much information (i.e. the confederate is taking all advanced comm and info sci classes and is interested in digital deception) that makes the profile look oddly suspicious. If, instead, you used a new fake profile you would have a fair amount of work to do to in order to get it into a “believable” state – i.e. have a reasonable number of friends and photos.

On the other hand, there is a danger when using two unacquainted individuals as well. Most Cornell students are linked to each other over Facebook by only one or two degrees of separation. Seeing a profile with friends and activities in common, even if the individuals themselves are unacquainted, may give the subjects a bias before they even look at any of the other asymmetric information.

So, I don’t know what to tell you. I see dangers and advantages in both cases and wish you the best of luck with your decision. Let us know how the research turns out next semester!

 
At 6:08 PM, Blogger Lauren Katzberg said...

Kate- great job yesterday! Your presentation was very well organized and easy to follow. As I suggested in class, I think it would be good to use the same scenario in your three examples (i.e. what’s your major, I heard that the AEM department is great, I saw on your facebook profile that you are an AEM major). You have a very interesting topic, and there are a lot of directions you can take it in. I am curious to see if you will decide to go beyond the facebook profile and see just how far facebook can take “stalking.” I love how you used Alex as an example, but it might have been interesting to look at the groups he belongs to, his friends, and his pictures. There is a lot of information to be had! It is nice that you are actually doing an experiment. I think it would be good to include a task in your experiment. By having a specific task, it will be easier for you to compare each session. I also think it is interesting how you decided to explicitly tell the person who sees the profile that the other person does not know that you have seen it. This might make that person think that they are not supposed to mention the profile to the other person, which might bias your results. Just a thought. Great job, and congrats!

 
At 6:08 PM, Blogger Lauren Katzberg said...

Kate- great job yesterday! Your presentation was very well organized and easy to follow. As I suggested in class, I think it would be good to use the same scenario in your three examples (i.e. what’s your major, I heard that the AEM department is great, I saw on your facebook profile that you are an AEM major). You have a very interesting topic, and there are a lot of directions you can take it in. I am curious to see if you will decide to go beyond the facebook profile and see just how far facebook can take “stalking.” I love how you used Alex as an example, but it might have been interesting to look at the groups he belongs to, his friends, and his pictures. There is a lot of information to be had! It is nice that you are actually doing an experiment. I think it would be good to include a task in your experiment. By having a specific task, it will be easier for you to compare each session. I also think it is interesting how you decided to explicitly tell the person who sees the profile that the other person does not know that you have seen it. This might make that person think that they are not supposed to mention the profile to the other person, which might bias your results. Just a thought. Great job, and congrats!

 
At 6:15 PM, Blogger Amy said...

Kate- Great job on your presentation! Your power point was clear and helpful in understanding your project and ideas. It was well organized and really helped me grasp what you were explaining. Also, the example of a facebook profile that you used really drew the class into your presentation and made it fun!
With respect to your research project, I was reading in your post that you were looking for feedback on whether or not to use a confederate as person B in your study. I agree that there are pros and cons to using a confederate; however, I think that the pros would outweigh the cons in your research. By using a confederate, person A would have the same information available to him or her each time the study was done. I think this would give your results more value because you would not only be able to see is people use the information they gain on facebook, but what types of information they use.
Good luck with your study! It sounds like it will make a great project!

 
At 6:15 PM, Blogger Amy said...

Kate- Great job on your presentation! Your power point was clear and helpful in understanding your project and ideas. It was well organized and really helped me grasp what you were explaining. Also, the example of a facebook profile that you used really drew the class into your presentation and made it fun!
With respect to your research project, I was reading in your post that you were looking for feedback on whether or not to use a confederate as person B in your study. I agree that there are pros and cons to using a confederate; however, I think that the pros would outweigh the cons in your research. By using a confederate, person A would have the same information available to him or her each time the study was done. I think this would give your results more value because you would not only be able to see is people use the information they gain on facebook, but what types of information they use.
Good luck with your study! It sounds like it will make a great project!

 
At 3:38 PM, Blogger Jenna Odett said...

Sorry it's a little late, but I still want to comment on your presentation (and offer my congratulations!). I think your approach to the presentation was optimal for your audience (us). You immediately had our attention because you included Alex's profile, and you only used a few slides to convey your topic, which kept it simple. I don't think anyone else in the class is studying asymetrical communication, so you held intrigue. In regards to your topic, you presented very succinctly and I think you did a great job.
On the questions you asked of us:
1. I've been reading everyone's thoughts and concerns, and I actually think that while it may be more difficult to control and harder to decipher differences, NOT using the confederate allows more flexibility in your results. An especially good point is that the likely confederate is an upper level communcation major studying digital deception. I think it will be very interesting to see how your experiment pans out (whether you use the confederate or not).
I liked your idea for a "get-to-know-you" task. I think that breaks the ice and lets people understand what kind of conversation you're intending to elicit from them to study.
Overall, really great job and congrats again!

 
At 12:29 AM, Blogger kaitlin said...

Kate-
First of all, great job! We have to give ourselves credit for going ont he first day, right? Your topic is really interesting and I think it's great how you organized your hypotheses. I agree with Lauren's comment in class that you should keep your examples consistend. It's amazing how much of a difference it can make! Also, I suggest using a confederate in your study; I'm not sure what the downsides are (I'm sure you know of a few) but confederated also aid to aspect of consistency, and also if you see that something isn't working, they can change accordingly. Other than that, great start! And congrats on the engagement!

 

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