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Data Analysis and Knowledge Discovery  2018, Vol. 2 Issue (4): 48-58    DOI: 10.11925/infotech.2096-3467.2017.0904
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Analyzing Characteristics and Dynamics of User Behaviors in Social Q&A Community: Case Study of
Guo Bo1, Zhao Junrui2(), Sun Yu3
1Meizu Technology Co., Ltd., Beijing 100872, China
2College of Information Science & Technology, Beijing University of Chemical Technology, Beijing 100029, China;
3Computer Science Department, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona 91768, USA
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[Objective] This paper aims to explore users’ relationship network and behaviors in the social question and answer (Q&A) communities. [Methods] First, we retrieved the publicly accessible user profiles and Q&A data from, a popular online Q&A community in China. Then, we analyzed the social network structure, the user profiles and the time statistics of users’ behaviors based on complex network and human dynamics theories. [Results] The Zhihu users showed some similar behaviors at the individual and group levels. The inter-event time and waiting time followed the power-law distribution, with power index values of 0.68 and 1.51, respectively. The degree distribution of the relationship network, the amount of users’ answers, support, and comments met the exponential truncated power-law distribution. The overall behaviors of Zhihu users were of significant heterogeneity and multiple scale characteristics. [Limitations] The sample size needs to be expanded and more research is needed to compare our findings with studies of other social Q&A communities. [Conclusions] This study reveals the relationship between the user’s behaviors and information dissemination on, which explores the network structure and the information flow of social question and answer communities.

Key wordsZhihu      Social Network      Human Dynamics      Power-law Distribution     
Received: 07 September 2017      Published: 11 May 2018
ZTFLH:  G350  

Cite this article:

Guo Bo,Zhao Junrui,Sun Yu. Analyzing Characteristics and Dynamics of User Behaviors in Social Q&A Community: Case Study of Data Analysis and Knowledge Discovery, 2018, 2(4): 48-58.

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