Focus on... Jean-Marc Francony and MediaSwell

on the October 15, 2020

Jean-Marc Francony is a senior lecturer, computer specialist in social sciences. From the 90’s he worked on the human-machine interaction and how to capture data. He created MediaSwell, a platform that explores and captures data and documents from the web and social media. It comes from a long process and an evolution of research needs.
In 2010, Twitter was emerging and researchers felt that interesting information was circulating on social media. Twitter appeared to be an interesting spot that gathered data about events. Jean-Marc Francony began to automatically register data on Twitter. He worked on 2012 presidential elections and the London Olympics. These are the premises of the platform. The aim was to preserve the information to analyze it later.

He continued working on big media events (French elections and Olympics). It allowed him to improve his platform and thoughts. Whereas the first idea was to document an event, the researcher then oriented his research toward the event dynamics: how the event is built, how emotions are involved in it, etc.

In 2017, the Grenoble Alpes Data Institute triggered a second awareness. It was to work on actantial dynamics to analyze how stakeholder communities are being formed. Moreover, a question emerged with the Grenoble Alpes Data Institute ‘s multidisciplinary team: how several researchers can work on a same dataset. Jean-Marc Francony empowered data collection by researchers. He created Digital Data Fabrik, a community bringing together social sciences researchers who want to be involved in their data collection. His goal was to help foster the digital freedom in the research field.

Since 2019, a new dynamic appeared. The MediaSwell plateform is not used only to document and to visualize data, but also to qualify it. The plateform is used as an observation frame by monitoring decision-making processes to better understand it. So, the platform now allows to work on decision-making processes by a “just in time” analyze.

Over time, the MediaSwell platform evolved to document a media event, to analyze the event and the actantial dynamics and finally, to monitor the research itself.

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Published on October 15, 2020