Is this the new swingometer? Network analysis given the broadcast journalism treatment (VIDEO)

The BBC current affairs programme Newsnight delved into network analysis this week. Network analysis generally involves generating diagrams which show clusters of relationships between people: a particularly powerful way of showing everything from power relationships to echo chambers and which people dominate or bridge particular groups of people.

The results tend to look like this:

israel_palestine_networks

This network diagram shows how pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian networks cluster online [source]

It’s not a new thing in journalism: Channel 4 did it with Who Knows Who

Channel 4_who_knows_who

Channel 4’s Who Knows Who project mapped connections between those in power

…and Reuters did it with Connected China:

..and over a decade ago the Washington Post used the technique to look at the money behind George W. Bush’s election campaign:

Bush_network_analysis_Washington_post

The Washington Post looked at donors to George W. Bush’s 2004 election campaign

But as the technique gets easier the BBC treatment is noteworthy as one particularly creative response to the question “How do we make this work on TV?”

Plonking a presenter in space floating around these networks? It may just be the next swingometer

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