back to article Stanford brainiacs say they can predict Reddit raids

A group from Stanford University says conflicts on Reddit forums follow a reliable enough pattern to be predicted before they happen. A study [PDF] based on observations from 36,000 subreddit communities has found that online dust-ups can be predicted, and the people most likely to cause them can be identified. "We discovered …

  1. DougMac

    Wow, they could have just dug up behaviorial studies of 2nd graders on the playground and be done and complete.

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge

      What they did or what you suggest would do the job. This might just tell us a thing or two about politics in a given country or the whole world work also. This behavior isn't just for kids anymore.

      1. BillG Silver badge

        @Mark 85 write: This behavior isn't just for kids anymore.

        Some people never grow up. They just get taller.

  2. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

    Short term detection

    Along with so many other similar methods, this will only work in the short term. Trolls will adapt to the technique and "game" the detection, making it ineffective and inefficient because another sticking plaster will then need to be applied to correct for the new trolling technique, etc.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Other applications....

    Could this be used, for example, to predict antisocial violent behaviour before it happens?

  4. ThatOne Bronze badge

    Human behavior is quite predictable, but a crowd is a chaotic system, so I guess the answer is both yes and no...

  5. JCitizen

    "ThatOne" is right...

    The article hit it on the head with the "echo chambers" observation. People who have ideas about the world have generally jelled them in their way of thinking, and will not join a group with contrary opinion. So crossing the "echo chamber" divide rarely works, as no one wants to hear the other side or give it a reasonable chance of logical thought. This is exactly what makes the human chimp a warfaring creature. They'd rather solve problems by killing the other guy with a different opinion. Sad but true.

  6. brotherelf

    Mildly disappointed…

    Going by the headline, I thought this research would have involved cases of fake emergencies triggering SWAT?

    (I can totally see "we use AI and blockchain to [try and, ed.] detect people who will become upset enough to do these things, give us venture capital. (Sorry we were late on that suicide prevention AI party.)" happening.)

  7. Velv Silver badge

    "40 month study"

    Spent too long on r/GoneWild me thinks...

  8. Calimero

    Microsoft TAY:

    Glad to know it will not happen again!

  9. onefang Silver badge

    I knew these things back in the '80s, when I would sometimes be called upon to chase away online trolls and other ne'er-do-wells.

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