# A Mathematical Explanation Of The Justin Bieber Phenomenon

Canadian researchers have determined that Bieber Fever is “the most infectious disease of our time”.

Treating Bieber obsession like any disease, biologist Valerie Tweedle and mathematician Robert J. Smith called it “a full pandemic, primarily among our youth.”

The Canadian duo found that people infected with this disease have sudden fluctuations of emotion when it comes to the pop star compared with the general population.

Tweedle and Smith found that the only way to stop Bieber Fever was constant negative media attention, what they call “the Lindsay Lohan effect.” Bieber’s career could be derailed by scandal or by ageing and gradual diminishing of his charm.

Social media is a primary incubators of Bieber Fever. Between Sept. 12, 2010, and March 12, 2011, approximately 1 per cent of all tweets around the world were related to Bieber.

In the absence of media attention, as shown over a period of about 150 months, Bieber fans would still have interest but at relatively low levels. This is what would happen if there wasn’t a ridiculous amount of media coverage devoted to Bieber.

“Tabloid journalism may be our last and best hope against this fast-moving and highly infectious disease. Otherwise, our nation’s children may be in a great deal of trouble,” they concluded. Without that, it seems like Bieber Fever will continue indefinitely because of the overwhelmingly positive media coverage devoted to him.

A few charts from the study:

Figure 1. Percentage of Twitter tweets related to Justin Bieber over a period of 180 days (from September 2010 to March 2011). The figure was created using the Trendistic application, although in fairness we suspect the application was actually invented to track tweets about Justin Bieber and for no other purpose.
Figure 9. Media pulses for fast boredom (b = 2 and thus R0 = 0.59). A. The phase plane, showing that susceptible individuals are phased out, but that Bieber-infected individuals do not approach an equilibrium, but instead continue to oscillate in impulsive periodic orbit. B. The time series. When the disease would otherwise die out, media pulses can sustain Bieber Fever. This is what keeps PR departments in gainful employment. So now you know who to blame.
Figure 10. The effects of continuous media. A. Slow boredom (b = 1/24 and thus R0 = 24). In this case, there is a moderate peak and susceptible individuals are depleted. B. Fast boredom (b = 2 and thus R0 = 0.59). In this case, there is a small outbreak, but it is unsustainable in the long term. And this is why PR departments always take such long lunches.