Tag Archives: social

Older adults cautious about using online physician ratings

By | January 10, 2020

Online ratings can help with making decisions on everything from hotels to hair stylists. But online ratings of physicians? A new poll by the U-M Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation suggests they don’t yet hold as much sway with the Americans who use the most health care: people over age 50. In all, 43 percent of people between… Read More »

Eating and Tweeting: What social media reveals about attitudes on food

By | November 29, 2019

An interdisciplinary group of U-M researchers turned to Twitter to see whether online discussions about food can help inform policy makers. They used community-based surveys to gather demographic and health-related behavior information that might help explain health status and disparities between groups, and whether there were differences between how groups of residents of a given region discussed food. Their… Read More »

Temporary social profiles may help adults vet feedback on sensitive topics

Temporary social profiles are being used for more than just online scams and disinformation. Tawfiq Ammari, a PhD candidate in the School of Information, says these “throwaway” accounts might help adults collect helpful comments and feedback on “socially stigmatizing” topics such as divorce, postpartum depression, and mental health.

Computer science classes may have positive social effects

Researchers from U-M, Cornell University, and the Nairobi Play project studied the social and cultural effects of computer science classes. The researchers found that computer science classes can encourage children to work together overcome cultural barriers. Kentaro Toyama, a professor in the School of Information, was part of the team. The researchers interviewed and observed children from a… Read More »

Gamified childhood: Are digital devices replacing traditional playtime?

By | October 25, 2019

Blocks, books and bikes used to be the staples of childhood. But as more kids grow up with a seemingly endless menu of virtual activities offered through digital media, child development experts worry about the wane of traditional playtime. Jenny Radesky, a pediatrician at U-M’s C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, who is addressing the topic at the national American Academy of Pediatrics meeting in… Read More »

Millennials are the most tech-saturated generation of parents yet

By | September 4, 2019

The spectrum of digital child-rearing resources for millennial parents is huge. Beyond social media and forums and Google, there are smartphone apps that log the duration of every breast-feeding session, record an infant’s nap times to the minute, and send push notifications reminding parents of upcoming developmental milestones. Those tools can be useful. But when it comes to… Read More »

Designing social technology for rural areas

By | August 12, 2019

When we think about the technological divide between urban and rural communities, our minds likely go to infrastructure—a lack of a physical grid, wiring, or towers to connect those in remote communities. While this is a large part of the issue, School of Information doctoral student Jean Hardy says a bigger concern is the lack of innovation in the way… Read More »

Fighting fake videos with improved computer vision

By | June 25, 2019

Contributing to a project that aims to detect “deepfake” videos, U-M engineers developed software that improves a computer’s ability to track an object through a video clip by 11% on average. The software, called BubbleNets, chooses the best frame for a human to annotate. In addition to helping train algorithms for spotting doctored clips, it could improve computer… Read More »

Is ‘digital addiction’ a real threat to kids?

By | June 3, 2019

There’s a great deal of talk these days about “digital addiction.” But several experts from U-M say we should teach kids to think of screens as something to handle in moderation rather than something without any healthy place in our lives. Ellen Selkie, an assistant professor of adolescent medicine, who does research on adolescents’ use of social media,… Read More »

Dissonance: Understanding the Social Implications of AI, April 17

By | April 11, 2019

Through mobile phones, the Internet of Things, and web computing, every single day around the globe we create a quintillion bytes of data. Pairing that trove of data with enormous computational power, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is making strides into every aspect of everyday living, from emails and targeted advertising, to healthcare and education. But with great power comes… Read More »

Online civic engagement is not always a positive experience

By | April 4, 2019

Online civic engagement is generally viewed as a positive way for individuals to improve the quality of life in their community. But new research led by School of Information associate professor Libby Hemphill suggests that online civic engagement doesn’t always feel good, and it doesn’t always improve the community. Hemphill and her team interviewed 40 nonprofit employees and… Read More »

Does social media really make a difference in vaccination rates?

By | March 8, 2019

Social media companies face increasing scrutiny for amplifying fringe anti-vaccine sentiment amid measles outbreaks in several states like Washington. In response, Facebook, YouTube and Pinterest recently made headlines by announcing initiatives to reduce vaccine misinformation on their platforms. Brendan Nyhan, a professor of public policy at the Ford School, recently wrote in “The New York Times” that while… Read More »

Why fears of fake news are overhyped

By | February 13, 2019

A study conducted by U-M professor of public policy Brendan Nyhan suggests that the effect of fake news on the 2016 election has been overestimated. Using laptop/desktop web traffic data from a nationally representative online panel allowed Nyhan and his colleagues to measure who visited fake news sites before the 2016 election with unprecedented precision. “Relatively few people consumed this form… Read More »

Takeaways: Mayo Clinic Social Media Network Annual Conference

I recently returned from the Mayo Clinic Social Media Network Annual Conference. My boss asked me how it went. I replied that every single session was useful. That impressed both of us! Everything. I mean, quite literally, EVERYTHING. It’s all good, and there is nothing they offered that I didn’t want to see. You can see the program… Read More »

Should ethics be part of the computer science curriculum? 

By | November 23, 2018

As technology becomes ever more integrated into our daily lives, there’s a growing push for people in the computer and data science world to think about the social impact of tech. H. V. Jagadish, a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at U-M, joined Michigan Radio’s Stateside program to talk about the moral questions companies should ask when… Read More »

Your kid’s apps are crammed with ads

By | November 2, 2018

Many developers market apps for children as being educational. So Jenny Radesky, a pediatrician at the U-M Medical School who wrote the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines for children and media, wanted to check that out. Her team of researchers spent hundreds of hours playing 135 different games. Published in the Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics, the… Read More »