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  1. The Problem of Underdetermination in Model Selection

    Conventional model selection evaluates models on their ability to represent data accurately, ignoring their dependence on theoretical and methodological assumptions. Drawing on the concept of underdetermination from the philosophy of science, the author argues that uncritical use of methodological assumptions can pose a problem for effective inference. By ignoring the plausibility of assumptions, existing techniques select models that are poor representations of theory and are thus suboptimal for inference.
  2. Estimating Income Statistics from Grouped Data: Mean-constrained Integration over Brackets

    Researchers studying income inequality, economic segregation, and other subjects must often rely on grouped data—that is, data in which thousands or millions of observations have been reduced to counts of units by specified income brackets.
  3. Item Location, the Interviewer–Respondent Interaction, and Responses to Battery Questions in Telephone Surveys

    Survey researchers often ask a series of attitudinal questions with a common question stem and response options, known as battery questions. Interviewers have substantial latitude in deciding how to administer these items, including whether to reread the common question stem on items after the first one or to probe respondents’ answers. Despite the ubiquity of use of these items, there is virtually no research on whether respondent and interviewer behaviors on battery questions differ over items in a battery or whether interview behaviors are associated with answers to these questions.
  4. Virtual Rituals: Community, Emotion, and Ritual in Massive Multiplayer Online Role-playing Games—A Quantitative Test and Extension of Structural Ritualization Theory

    Millions of people worldwide immerse themselves in massive multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs). These games generate large, diverse communities that engage in rituals within the game, completing missions or quests. What role do these MMORPG rituals play in commitment to these gaming communities? To address this question, we extend structural ritualization theory to explain the impact of ritual events and emotion on commitment to community in the game World of Warcraft.
  5. Measuring Social Capital with Twitter within the Electronics and ICT Cluster of the Basque Country

    Social network sites like Twitter enable the creation of virtual environments where online communities are formed around specific topics. Lately, due to their increasing success, these platforms are turning out to be effective for electronic word‐of‐mouth communication since they can be used as another means to spread information and build a network of contacts.

  6. Conspicuous Reviewing: Affiliation with High-status Organizations as a Motivation for Writing Online Reviews

    The vast amount of reviews available online presents a paradox: Why do reviewers spend hours writing them? Here we demonstrate in three studies that one reason people write online reviews is to bolster their public identity by conspicuously affiliating with high-status products or organizations. First, we conducted a set of surveys and found that participants are more likely to post online reviews of restaurants that are higher status, controlling for their familiarity and liking of the restaurant.

  7. Numbers, Narratives, and Nation: Mainstream News Coverage of U.S. Latino Population Growth, 1990–2010

    Ideologies that support racial domination and White supremacy remain foundational in U.S. society, even as the nation becomes increasingly diverse and progressively focused on quantitative measurement. This study explores how a prominent mainstream news outlet represents the growth of the nation’s second largest population, Latinos, within this changing demographic and numeric environment.
  8. The Algorithmic Rise of the “Alt-Right”

    As with so many technologies, the Internet’s racism was programmed right in—and it’s quickly fueled the spread of White supremacist, xenophobic rhetoric throughout the western world.
  9. Commuter Spouses and the Changing American Family

    the rise of commuter marriage reflects decades of social change in women’s workplace participation, american individualism, technological saturation, bureaucratic hurdles, and the symbolic significance of marriage itself.

  10. Review Essays: Little Shop of Horrors? A Digital Age Startup’s Experiment with Radical Transparency

    TechCo, the conversational firm at the center of Catherine Turco’s ethnography, is a fast-growing social media marketing company. Turco opens The Conversational Firm: Rethinking Bureaucracy in the Age of Social Media by introducing the founders of the firm, Eric and Anil, whose mission is “radical openness” in the service of succeeding in the digital economy (p. 15). Eric and Anil believe their organization must be nimble, responding directly and personally to their business customers through social media of all types.