We analyze the popular push-pull protocol for spreading a rumor in networks. Initially, a single node knows of a rumor. In each succeeding round, every node chooses a random neighbor, and the two nodes share the rumor if one of them is already aware of it. We present the first theoretical analysis of this protocol on random graphs that have a power law degree distribution with an arbitrary exponent β > 2. Our main findings reveal a striking dichotomy in the performance of the protocol that depends on the exponent of the power law. More specifically, we show that if 2 < β < 3, then the rumor spreads to almost all nodes in Θ(log log n) rounds with high probability.
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