Excavating Business Intelligence from Social Media

Excavating Business Intelligence from Social Media

Giannis Milolidakis (Technological Education Institute of Crete, Greece & Euromed Management, France), Demosthenes Akoumianakis (Technological Education Institute of Crete, Greece), Chris Kimble (Euromed Management, France & Université Montpellier II, France) and Nikolas Karadimitriou (Technological Education Institute of Crete, Greece)
Copyright: © 2014 |Pages: 12
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-5202-6.ch084

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Transforming business relevant data into BI has been a long-standing aim of firms in different sectors of the industry (Chen, Chiang, & Storey, 2012; Wixom & Watson, 2010). In recent years, the portfolio of methods has expanded to account for social media such as social Web sites and social networking services. This is mainly due to the wealth of data hosted and made available with the end users’ consent. Such data turn out to be useful in revealing not only cultural information about past and/or on-going incidents but also market trends, consumer behaviour and other business related aspects. Such information can be processed and analysed from various perspectives such as social network analysis (Scott, 1988), virtual ethnographic assessments (Harrison, 2009), data mining and information discovery (Fayyad, Piatetsky-Shapiro, & Smyth, 1996). The capability of enterprises to appropriate such data stems from the social media platforms’ openness, interoperability and use of third-party applications. An attempt to synthesize representative efforts in this direction is presented in Table 1.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Affordance: It is a quality of an object that denotes the range of possible actions offered by that object. Considering affordances is necessary to identify possibilities for action within a virtual settlement.

Virtual Settlement: A virtual space within an on-line infrastructure that supports some form of computer-mediated communication. It is analogous to the physical space within which a traditional archaeological settlement might be found. Like a traditional archaeological settlement, virtual settlements can be excavated using methods based on the archaeological paradigm.

Digital Trace: A digital trace constitutes a cultural artefact in a virtual settlement. It is some form of evidence of the activity of a user. Digital traces may be records stored in databases or log files which can be accessed by researchers though the use of API’s or Web crawlers.

Cultural Artefact: Culture is viewed as 'enacted', that is, it is an emergent property of the activities of a certain group of actors. A cultural artefact is object that provides information about the activities of this group and the culture of its user.

Virtual Excavation: A systematic acquisition of digital trace data from virtual settlements using the archaeological paradigm. Virtual excavations for business intelligence are aimed at locating and follow the activities of an active group of participants who constitute a source of useful business intelligence rather than improving our understanding of past events.

Social media: Social media are specific type of virtual settlement which exists within Internet-based or cloud-based applications. Social media facilitate the co-creation and dissemination of the various forms of content that are generated by the users of that media.

Virtual Communities: A virtual community is a group of people who interact with each other within the boundaries of some virtual settlement where the characteristic of that community are, to some extent, shaped by the features that the surrounding on-line infrastructure makes available to them.

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