six degrees of separation

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six degrees of separation

A term referring to the observation that any person on Earth is, on average, six “steps” away from knowing any other person, such that a chain of "a friend of a friend" statements can be made to connect any two people in no more than 6 steps. This social and mathematical conundrum was formulated in the mid-1960s, and characterises the interwoven webs of acquaintances among friends, neighbours, colleagues and relatives.
References in periodicals archive ?
CHOICE Professor Brian Cox 6 Degrees of Separation BBC2, 10pm Not content with giving our brains a Monday night work out with the double bill of University Challenge and Only Connect, BBC Two is now bringing us a new panel show so mentally stimulating, it threatens to make QI look like Celebrity Juice.
6 Degrees of Separation exploits that old idea that everyone or everything on the planet is six or fewer steps away from any other person.