Social Influence Analysis in Social Networking Big Data: Opportunities and Challenges
Social influence analysis has become one of the most important technologies in modern information and service industries. It will definitely become an essential mechanism to perform complex analysis in social networking big data. It is attracting an increasing amount of research ranging from popular topics extraction to social influence analysis, including analysis and processing of big data, social influence evaluation, influential users identification, and information diffusion modeling. We provide a comprehensive investigation of social influence analysis, and discuss the characteristics of social influence and the architecture of social influence analysis based on social networking big data. The relationship between big data and social influence analysis is also discussed. In addition, research challenges relevant to real-world issues based on social networking big data in social influence analysis are discussed, focusing on research issues such as scalability, data collection, dynamic evolution, causal relationships, network heterogeneity, evaluation metrics, and effective mechanisms. Our goal is to provide a broad research guideline of existing and ongoing efforts via social influence analysis in large-scale social networks, and to help researchers better understand the existing work, and design new algorithms and methods for social influence analysis.