Preferential attachment in the growth of social networks: The internet encyclopedia Wikipedia

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Preferential attachment in the growth of social networks: The internet encyclopedia Wikipedia is a 2006 publication written in English by A. Capocci, V. D. P. Servedio, F. Colaiori, L. S. Buriol, D. Donato, S. Leonardi, G. Caldarelli and published in Physical Review E.

[edit] Abstract

We present an analysis of the statistical properties and growth of the free on-line encyclopedia Wikipedia. By describing topics by vertices and hyperlinks between them as edges, we can represent this encyclopedia as a directed graph. The topological properties of this graph are in close analogy with those of the World Wide Web, despite the very different growth mechanism. In particular, we measure a scale-invariant distribution of the in and out degree and we are able to reproduce these features by means of a simple statistical model. As a major consequence, Wikipedia growth can be described by local rules such as the preferential attachment mechanism, though users, who are responsible of its evolution, can act globally on the network.

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