Structural Differentiation in Social Media

Adhocracy, Entropy, and the "1 % Effect"

  • Sorin Adam Matei
  • Brian C. Britt

Part of the Lecture Notes in Social Networks book series (LNSN)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xi
  2. Sorin Adam Matei, Brian C. Britt
    Pages 1-17
  3. Structural Differentiation and Social Media: Theoretical Framework

  4. Configurational Change Phases and Motors in Online Collaboration

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 85-85
    2. Sorin Adam Matei, Brian C. Britt
      Pages 97-112
    3. Sorin Adam Matei, Brian C. Britt
      Pages 125-142
    4. Sorin Adam Matei, Brian C. Britt
      Pages 143-163
  5. Future Theoretical and Practical Directions

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 165-165
    2. Sorin Adam Matei, Brian C. Britt
      Pages 167-178
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 179-247

About this book


This book explores community dynamics within social media. Using Wikipedia as an example, the volume explores communities that rely upon commons-based peer production. Fundamental theoretical principles spanning such domains as organizational configurations, leadership roles, and social evolutionary theory are developed. In the context of Wikipedia, these theories explain how a functional elite of highly productive editors has emerged and why they are responsible for a majority of the content. It explains how the elite shapes the project and how this group tends to become stable and increasingly influential over time. Wikipedia has developed a new and resilient social hierarchy, an adhocracy, which combines features of traditional and new, online, social organizations. The book presents a set of practical approaches for using these theories in real-world practice.

This work fundamentally changes the way we think about social media leadership and evolution, emphasizing the crucial contributions of leadership, of elite social roles, and of group global structure to the overall success and stability of large social media projects. Written in an accessible and direct style, the book will be of interest to academics as well as professionals with an interest in social media and commons-based peer production processes.


social media group organization evolution of wikipedia modeling wikipedian interactions behavior of wikipedians Wikipedia leadership dynamics online community dynamics commons-based peer production social media analytics

Authors and affiliations

  • Sorin Adam Matei
    • 1
  • Brian C. Britt
    • 2
  1. 1.Purdue UniversityWest LafayetteUSA
  2. 2.South Dakota State UniversityBrookingsUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer International Publishing AG 2017
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Computer Science
  • Print ISBN 978-3-319-64424-0
  • Online ISBN 978-3-319-64425-7
  • Series Print ISSN 2190-5428
  • Series Online ISSN 2190-5436
  • Buy this book on publisher's site