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An Exploratory Data Analysis of the #Crowdfunding Network on Twitter

1
Irish Institute of Digital Business, Dublin City University, Collins Avenue, Dublin 9 D09, Ireland
2
Irish Centre for Cloud Computing and Commerce, Dublin City University, Collins Avenue, Dublin 9 D09, Ireland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
J. Open Innov. Technol. Mark. Complex. 2020, 6(3), 80; https://doi.org/10.3390/joitmc6030080
Received: 10 August 2020 / Revised: 7 September 2020 / Accepted: 8 September 2020 / Published: 11 September 2020
Together, social media and crowdsourcing can help entrepreneurs to attract external finance and early-stage customers. This paper investigates the characteristics and discourse of an issue-centered public on Twitter organized around the hashtag #crowdfunding through the lens of social network theory. Using a dataset of 2,732,144 tweets published during a calendar year, we use exploratory data analysis to generate insights and hypotheses on who the users in the #crowdfunding network are, what they share, and how they are connected to each other. In order to do so, we adopt a range of descriptive, content, network analytics techniques. The results suggest that platforms, crowdfunders, and other actors who derive income from the crowdfunding economy play a key role in creating the network. Furthermore, latent ties (strangers) play a direct role in disseminating information, investing, and sending signals to platforms that further raises campaign prominence. We also introduce a new type of social tie, the “computer as a social actor”, previously unaddressed in entrepreneurial network literature, which play a role in sending signals to both platforms and networks. Our results suggest that homophily is a key driver for creating network sub-communities built around specific platforms, project types, domains, or geography. View Full-Text
Keywords: crowdfunding; entrepreneurship; social network analysis; twitter; social media; strangers; computer as a social actor; CASA crowdfunding; entrepreneurship; social network analysis; twitter; social media; strangers; computer as a social actor; CASA
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MDPI and ACS Style

Lynn, T.; Rosati, P.; Nair, B.; Mac an Bhaird, C. An Exploratory Data Analysis of the #Crowdfunding Network on Twitter. J. Open Innov. Technol. Mark. Complex. 2020, 6, 80. https://doi.org/10.3390/joitmc6030080

AMA Style

Lynn T, Rosati P, Nair B, Mac an Bhaird C. An Exploratory Data Analysis of the #Crowdfunding Network on Twitter. Journal of Open Innovation: Technology, Market, and Complexity. 2020; 6(3):80. https://doi.org/10.3390/joitmc6030080

Chicago/Turabian Style

Lynn, Theo, Pierangelo Rosati, Binesh Nair, and Ciáran Mac an Bhaird. 2020. "An Exploratory Data Analysis of the #Crowdfunding Network on Twitter" Journal of Open Innovation: Technology, Market, and Complexity 6, no. 3: 80. https://doi.org/10.3390/joitmc6030080

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