Science News
Published: Jun 26, 2014
Facebook manipulates 600k user newsfeeds for psychology study [VIDEO]
by staff

Facebook manipulates 600k user newsfeeds for psychology study [VIDEO], Facebook has come under fire after the revealation that the social media giant manipulated users' News Feeds to see if it made them feel blue. This activity now has some users seeing red.

Facebook is receiving backlash after participating in a study that saw the company tweaking content seen by more than 600,000 users for a psychology experiment.

In January 2012, Facebook manipulated News Feeds to show statuses that were particularly positive or negative and found that the emotions of others can affect your mood. The findings were published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in an article called "Experimental evidence of massive-scale emotional contagion through social networks."

Researchers did not tell users of the News Feed manipulation that it would be taking place, however, the actions by Facebook is legal due to terms laid out in the user agreement when an individual signs up for the site.

Adam Kramer, one of the authors of the study, has since taken to his personal Facebook page to apologize for the way the research was described in the paper:

"I can understand why some people have concerns about it, and my coauthors and I are very sorry for the way the paper described the research and any anxiety it caused. In hindsight, the research benefits of the paper may not have justified all of this anxiety."

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