The dynamic nature of conflict in Wikipedia
Centre for Computational Physics, Department of Physics, University of Coimbra - 3004-516 Coimbra, Portugal
Received: 29 April 2014
Accepted: 16 September 2014
The voluntary process of Wikipedia edition provides an environment in which the outcome is clearly a collective product of interactions involving a large number of people. We propose a simple agent-based model, developed from real data, to reproduce the collaborative process of Wikipedia edition. With a small number of simple ingredients, our model mimics several interesting features of real human behaviour, namely in the context of edit wars. We show that the level of conflict is determined by a tolerance parameter, which measures the editors' capability to accept different opinions and to change their own opinion. We propose to measure conflict with a parameter based on mutual reverts, which increases only in contentious situations. Using this parameter, we find a distribution for the inter-peace periods that is heavy tailed. The effects of wiki-robots in the conflict levels and in the edition patterns are also studied. Our findings are compared with previous parameters used to measure conflicts in edit wars.
PACS: 89.75.Fb – Structures and organization in complex systems / 05.65.+b – Self-organized systems / 89.20.Hh – World Wide Web, Internet
© EPLA, 2014