Affiliations: [a] Telmar Group Inc., 470 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10016, USA. E-mail: [email protected] | [b] Intellidyn, 175 Derby St., Suite 40, Hingham, MA 02043, USA. E-mail: [email protected]
Abstract: Relations between traditional statistical and recently emerging sociophysics paradigms in the social sciences are considered. Similarities and differences between them are analyzed, resulting in a list of the qualitative differences to modeling approaches of reality. Historical review of sociophysics ideas provided, which shows that sociophysics has old and deep, yet often forgotten traces in social and systemic heritage. Importance of complimentary development of two directions in social field is emphasized. Mediaphysics, a branch of sociophysics proposed by the authors, is briefly described as a possible way to use advantages of these two approaches in an organic integrity. It applies general physical models to usual statistical data sets of mass phenomena, which makes it usable for a very wide class of problems, unlike typical physical models, oriented on specific systems. The keystone of the proposed approach is an analysis of population distributions between several alternatives (brands, political affiliations, or opinions) under the influence of internal and external fields.
Keywords: Sociophysics, econophysics, statistics, general system theory, field theory, influence, mediaphysics, word of mouth, media