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To Harness The Long Tail Online, Location Does Matter As Does Time

Google Tech Talk (more info below) April 4, 2011 Presented by Chetan Kumar. ABSTRACT There has been a tremendous growth in the amount and range of information available on the Internet. The users' requests for online information can be captured by a long tail model. A few popular websites enjoy a high number of visitations while the majority of the rest are less frequently requested. In this study we investigate this phenomenon using real world data from ten proxy servers in four US time zones. We demonstrate that both users' physical location and time of access affect the heterogeneity of website requests. The effect may partially be explained by differences in demographic characteristics at locations and diverse user browsing behavior on weekdays and weekends. These results can be used to design better online ad pricing strategies, affiliate advertising models, and Internet caching algorithms with sensitivities to user location and time of access differences. This may be of interest to online services providers such as Google and Facebook, given the increased interest in localized and customized online deliveries. Short bio: Chetan Kumar is an Associate Professor of Information Systems and Operations Management at California State University San Marcos. He received his PhD from Purdue University. His research interests include managing computer networks, electronic commerce, web analytics, and green IT. He has published articles in refereed journals such as Decision Support Systems and Electronic Commerce Research and Applications, and in books such as Encyclopedia of E-Business Development and Management in the Global Economy. He has presented his research at conferences such as Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences Annual Meeting, Workshop for EBusiness, Workshop on Information Systems and Economics, and International Conference on Information Systems Doctoral Consortium. Prior to his PhD, he worked for Reebok International where he managed the supply chain for Asia and Africa regions. Earlier he received an MBA from Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad and a BS in Computer Science from Bharathidasan University, Trichy, India.
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