Dr. Winter Mason

Room: BC 627
Phone: 201-216-3312
Email: wmason@stevens.edu
School:  Howe School of Technology Management

2007 Doctorate of Philosophy, Cognitive Science and Social Psychology
Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
Dissertation Title: Implicit Social Influence

1999 Bachelor of Science, Psychology
University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
Concentration: Cognitive Psychology


Social Media
Photo Recommendation Systems

There are many ways one could identify photos that a person might like: analyzing the content of photos to look for similar features, identifying tags in a person's photos and looking for similarly-tagged photos, using friends' photos or preferred photos, etc. In a research project with Flickr, we created an experiment that compares several possible means of recommending photos. If you are an active Flickr user, you can go to koala.sandbox.yahoo.net and try it out.


Social Influence
Implicit Social Influence

Research has shown that people tend to express their unconscious, automatic attitudes through unconscious, nonverbal behavior. For instance, the Implicit Attitude Test demonstrates that people's reaction times are guided by these implicit attitudes. Other research has shown that people are influenced by nonverbal behaviors. This project ties these two lines of research together, and show that one person's implicit attitudes can influence another person's attitudes.


Social Networks
Influence in Social Media Networks

There are many theories about how culture spreads between individuals. Studying the phenomenon in the past has relied on population-level metrics (e.g., Rogers, 1995) or laboratory experiments of dyadic influence (e.g., Sherif, 1935). However, recent technologies provide a new and unique glimpse into the real-world process. On the social media site Twitter, media sites, bloggers, corporations, and regular people create a network for sharing information, often in the form of URLs. We observe the diffusion of URLs on this micro-blogging site and consider the factors that lead to the spread of a URL.



Honors & Awards

Journal Publications & Conference Proceedings

  • Kooti, F., Yang, H., Cha, M., Gummadi, K. P. & Mason, W. (2012). The Emergence of Conventions in Online Social Networks. International Conference on Weblogs and Social Media (ICWSM), 2012, Dublin, Ireland. pdf
  • Mason, W. & Suri, S. (2012). A Guide to Behavioral Experiments on Mechanical Turk. Behavior Research Methods, 44(1), 1-23. pdf
  • Mason, W. & Watts, D. J. (2012). Collaborative problem solving in networks. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 109(3), 764-769. pdf
  • Suri, S., Goldstein, D. G., & Mason, W. (2011). Honesty in an Online Labor Market. Proceedings of the Human Computation (HCOMP) Workshop: AAAI, San Francisco, CA pdf
  • Wu, S., Hofman, J., Mason, W., & Watts, D. J. (2011). Who Says What to Whom on Twitter. International Conference on the World Wide Web (WWW), 2011, Hyderabad, India pdf
  • Bakshy, E., Hofman, J., Mason, W., & Watts, D. J. (2011). Everyone's an Influencer: Quantifying Influence on Twitter ACM International Conference on Web Search and Data Mining (WSDM) pdf
  • Goel, S., Mason, W., & Watts, D. J. (2010). Real and Perceived Attitude Homophily in Social Networks. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology(4), 611-621. pdf
  • De Choudhury, M., Hofman, J., Mason, W. & Watts, D. J. (2010). Inferring "Relevant" Network Structures from Social Communication. International Conference on the World Wide Web (WWW), 2010, Washington, D.C. pdf
  • Mason, W., & Watts, D. J. (2009). Financial Incentives and the "Performance of Crowds". Proceedings of the Human Computation (HCOMP) Workshop: Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining Conference, Paris, France. pdf
  • Mason, W., Jones, A. & Goldstone, R. L. (2008). Propagation of innovations in networked groups. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 137(3), 422-433. pdf
  • Queller, S., & Mason, W. (2008). A decision bound categorization approach to the study of subtyping of atypical group members. Social Cognition, 26(1), 66-101. pdf
  • Mason, W., Conrey, F. R., & Smith, E. R. (2007). Situating social influence processes: Dynamic, multidirectional flows of influence within social networks. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 11(3), 279-300. pdf
  • Queller, S., Schell, T. & Mason, W. (2006). A novel view of between-category contrast and within-category assimilation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 91(3), 406-422. pdf

Book Chapters

  • Goldstone, R. L., Roberts, M. E., Mason, W., & Gureckis, T. (2008). Collective search in concrete and abstract spaces. In T. Kugler, C. Smith, and T. Connelly (Eds.) Decision modeling and behavior in uncertain and complex environments. Springer Press. pdf
Grants, Contracts & Funds

NSF Award IIS-1211084, 2012-2015:

SoCS: Collaborative Research: Local Community Crowdsourcing of Physical-World Tasks with Myrmex, $219,514


NSF Award 12-538, 2012-2015:

Building Community and Capacity for Data-Intensive Research in the Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences and in Education and Human Resources (BCC), $65,339

  • BT 221 Statistics
  • BT 333 Relational Databases for IT
  • BIA 660 Web Analytics