Technology & Data
Social Change Agent Survey: Passion, Skill Set, and Persistence Lead to Career GrowthSandy Carter's 6 Social Business Lessons to Learn from Candy Crush5 Tips for Creating a Company Culture that Connects with Your Sweet Spot ClientsWhy Leadership Should Be a Collaborative Exercise
8 Internet User Statistics Every Small Business Should Know AboutCan't Find Time for Social Media? This Approach Will Help6 Ways to Turn Your Small Business into a Media Hub
- Social Organization
Beyond Engagement: Why Advocacy Is Always About the PeopleFormer IBM Senior Advisors Launch Brands Rising to Build Employee Advocacy ProgramsPerformance and Risk Management Through Social Media TrainingEmployee Advocacy Summit: Advocate Stories from the Field
- Customer Service
Join us September 15th in Atlanta for The Employee Advocacy Summit and learn how to unleash the power of your employees.
Post your event here and we'll share it with our community. If one of our members is featured, we'll promote as well on their profile.
- Marketplace & Webinars
The SMT Marketplace
Your resource for exclusive content and insights from Social Media Today, and opportunities to reach our community of professionals.
The Social Business Book Club brings you books, discussions, and insights from today's to business thought leaders.
Join interactive talks and and panel discussions with leading thinkers and practitioners on social media and networked business, or browse the catalogue of recorded sessions - all completely free.
Reach Social Media Today's community of marketing and communications professionals in an editor-approved context with a native advertising package.
Google Flu Trends: Importance of Veracity, the 4th 'V' in Big Data
Posted on March 31st 2014
A lot has been written recently criticizing Goolge’s Flu Trends – a flu tracker service that predicts flu activity based on specific search terms using aggregated Google search data and estimates current flu activity around the world in near real-time. For more, read How does this work?
Science magazine has recently published an article titled “The Parable of Google Flu: Traps in Big Data Analysis” and Steve Lohr has published a great piece in BITS blog of New York Times titled “Google Flu Trends: The Limits of Big Data.”
It is important to note that over-estimation of flu activity in Google Flu Trends is NOT a limitation of Big Data or Analytics used for estimating the flu activity as some of the writers have suggested. Rather, it highlights importance of fourth “V” of Big Data – Veracity.
It is often mentioned that Big Data has three defining attributes – three Vs as they are called, namely Data Volume, Data Variety and Data Velocity. (for more, check out TDWI Best Practices Report titled Big Data Analytics). But this definition of Big Data misses a very important dimension or element of Big Data, namely Data Veracity.
I think Google Flu Trends estimates will be much more realistic if we were to incorporate Data Veracity, the fourth dimension of Big Data into estimation models and adjust estimates based on “Veracity Score”.
In other words, inaccurate estimates of flu activity as reported by Google Flu Trends is NOT a limitation of Big Data or Analytics, rather we need to incorporate the Data Veracity element into the estimation model.
What do you think? Do you agree that inaccurate estimates of flu activity as reported by Google Flu Trends is NOT a limitation of Big Data or Analytics?
Photo Credit: Google Flu and Data/shutterstock