Socialbots — Day One

Greetings readers! As promised — this will be the first post in a series of daily posts over the next two weeks, cataloging the first large scale battle in bot-driven social influence. At last count, Socialbots 2011 features three teams, what we’re calling here Team A, Team B, and Team C. Teams A and B are fielding single entity bots in the competition, and Team C is running a lead bot and as well as a swarm of smaller supporting bots floating in the network.

After the first day of official action — Team C has pulled into an early lead, generating 90 points — 75 from mutual followbacks, and 15 points from a small set of @ replies. Current scores are:

  • Team A: 5
  • Team B: 4
  • Team C: 90

For your edification, we’ve put together an anonymized graph that shows the map of the battlefield with targets marked in red and lead bots marked in blue. It seems clear that Team A and C have chosen a more general strategy, ranging widely over the entire target group. Team B has programmed the bot to trace a tighter strategy — embedding itself within a tightly knit group of users in the bottom left quadrant of the map (what we’re affectionately calling “the Southern Front” here at mission control). We’ll be seeing the yield from that over the week. More tomorrow, stay tuned!