Social networks are a popular medium for building and maintaining a professional network. Many studies exist on general communication and connection practices within these networks. However, studies on expertise search suggest the existence of subgroups centered around a particular profession. In this paper, we analyze commonalities and differences between these groups, based on a set of 94,155 public user profiles. The results confirm that such subgroups can be recognized. Further, the average number of connections differs between groups, as a result of differences in intention for using social media. Similarly, within the groups, specific topics and resources are discussed and shared, and there are interesting differences in the tone and wording the group members use. These insights are relevant for interpreting results from social media analyses and can be used for identifying group-specific resources and communication practices that new members may want to know about.
Recognizing skill networks and their specific communication and connection practices