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    Los Angeles as a digital place: the geographies of user-generated content

    Ballatore, Andrea and De Sabbata, S. (2020) Los Angeles as a digital place: the geographies of user-generated content. Transactions in GIS 24 (4), pp. 880-902. ISSN 1361-1682.

    2019-Ballatore_DeSabbata-Los_Angeles_as_digital_city.pdf - Author's Accepted Manuscript

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    Online representations of places are becoming pivotal in informing our understanding of urban life. Content production on online platforms is grounded in the geography of their users and their digital infrastructure. These constraints shape place representation, that is the amount, quality, and type of digital information available in a geographic area. In this article, we study the place representation of user-generated content (UGC) in Los Angeles County, relating the spatial distribution of the data to its geo-demographic context. Adopting a comparative and multiplatform approach, this quantitative analysis investigates the spatial relation- ship between four diverse UGC datasets and their context at the census tract level (about 685,000 geo-located tweets, 9,700 Wikipedia pages, 4M OSM objects, and 180,000 Foursquare venues). The context includes the ethnicity, age, income, education, and deprivation of residents, as well as public infrastructure. An exploratory spatial analysis and regression-based models indicate that the four UGC platforms possess distinct geographies of place representation. To a moderate extent, the presence of Twitter, OpenStreetMap, and Foursquare data is influenced by population density, ethnicity, education, and income. However, each platform responds to different socio-economic factors and clusters emerge in disparate hotspots. Unexpectedly, Twitter data tends to be located in more dense, deprived areas, and the geography of Wikipedia appears peculiar and harder to explain. These trends are compared with previous findings for the area of Greater London.


    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: This is the peer reviewed version of the article, which has been published in final form at the link above. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): information geography, crowdsourcing, volunteered geographic information, los angeles, bias, social media
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences
    Research Centres and Institutes: Data Analytics, Birkbeck Institute for
    Depositing User: Andrea Ballatore
    Date Deposited: 12 Nov 2019 11:25
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:55


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