This project explores a particular framework for observing and describing the social dynamics of a social machines. Prosopography is a method used mostly by historians to systematically study collections of biographies, be they of individuals, groups, artefacts, or infrastructures. The prosopographical method starts with formulation of a questionnaire which is used to systematise data collection across the biographies.
For this project, we designed a questionnaire which relies on identification of five archetypal elements in biographical narratives. Our work in this project has applied the prosopographical method to case studies including Galaxy Zoo (forerunner to the Zooniverse citizen science platform), Linked Data URIs, and Twitter re-tweets to demonstrate the potential of using archetypal narratives to describe social dynamics in social machines.