Pro-anorexia and social mediaLuis Fernandez Luque (@luisluque), eHealthResearcher, Norut Tromsø (Norway)
Pro-anorexia Anorexia has a huge impact in thehealth and quality of life of patientsand relatives. Pro-anorexia: anorexia as a lifestyle. Well-known problem for nearly adecade. Watching pro-anorexia website canaffect the health of the viewers. 13% of female teenagers havereported using pro-anorexia webs ina Belgium studyReferences available at: http://www.jmir.org/2013/2/e30/
Misleading Health-Related InformationPromoted Through Video-Based SocialMedia: Anorexia on YouTubeSyed-Abdul S, Fernandez-Luque L, Jian WS, Li YC, Crain S, Hsu MH, WangYC, Khandregzen D, Chuluunbaatar E, Nguyen PA, Liou DM. MisleadingHealth-Related Information Promoted Through Video-Based Social Media:Anorexia on YouTube. J Med Internet Res 2013;15(2):e30
Study goals• YouTube is one of the mostvisited webpages worldwide• No studies on the prevalence ofpro-anorexia videos onYouTube.• 26% of American teenagershave posted videos online.
Study Methods• We extracted 7583 anorexia-related videos andanalized 140 (most popular, random, etc.) andclassified them in:– Informative videos– Pro-anorexia– Un-related
Results I• Around 1/3 of the videos were pro-anorexia, halfinformative and 20% unrelated.• If extrapolated, we can expect more than 2.000videos promoting anorexia in YouTube.• Pro-anorexia videos had less views, but weremore favorited (3x) and had more rating activity(2X).
Results II• The top-20 pro-anorexia videos had 9.5 millionviews.• We studied demographic information available in15 videos. Minors were in the top-age group in80% of them.
Conclusions• There is a need for better tools to filter pro-anorexia content.• Pro-anorexia videos are highly rated.• Pro-anorexia videos are being watch by minors
Pro-Anorexia and Pro-Recovery PhotoSharing: A Tale of Two Warring TribesYom-Tov E, Fernandez-Luque L, Weber I, Crain SP Pro-Anorexia and Pro-Recovery Photo Sharing: A Tale of Two Warring Tribes J Med Internet Res2012;14(6):e151
Study goal• To study the social network dimanics of the pro-anorexia and pro-recovery communities in thephoto-sharing social network Flickr.• Previous studies only focused on pro-anorexiacommunities and not in the interaction.
Methods• We extracted information about 491 users bothpro-anorexia and pro-recovery. These users hadposted 242,710 photos.• Social Network Analysis, Data Mining and othertechniques were applied to understand better thedynamics.
Results I• There are two clearlyseparated and inter-mindgle communities.• Network graphs(blue=pro-recovery,red=pro-anorexia) basedon (from top left,clickwise): contacts,favorites, tags,comments.
Results II - differences• Pro-anorexia users post less photos of themselves.• Pro-recovery are more active but publish about awider set of topics.• Pro-anorexia users are much likely to favorite a photofrom an pro-anorexia user than by an pro-recovery.• Pro-recovery users often try to engage pro-anorexiausers by using the same keywords in their photos(e.g. pro-anorexia)
Results II - influences• When a pro-recovery user commented on a photo of apro-anorexia user, the pro-anorexia user was morelikely to continue posting pro-anorexia photos.• When a pro-anorexia user comments on a photo of apro-recovery user, the pro-recovery user is more likelyto stop posting pro-recovery photos.• The influence of pro-anorexia users is higher than pro-recovery users.
Results II - Conclusions• The pro-anorexia network dynamics are far morecomplex than expected.• Social clues are crucial for filtering pro-anorexiacontent.• Better understanding of network dynamics can help todesign better public health interventions and avoidcounter-effects.