Were You A Facebook Guinea Pig?
Is it me, or is this kind of shady? Did you know Facebook secretly used almost 700,000 of us for an experiment? They wanted to see if they had the power to manipulate our emotions. Seriously.
During one week in January of 2012 Facebook some people mostly NEGATIVE posts from their friends and filtered out the good ones. They also showed some people mostly POSITIVE posts and filtered out the negative ones.
Then they monitored those people to see how it affected them. Did the people who mostly saw negative stuff become bummed out and post more negative stuff themselves? Did the people who saw positive stuff become happier?
Fortunately, they found they CAN'T manipulate our emotions and there was no connection between the posts people saw and how their moods changed.
And if you're thinking "how dare they do this without my permission!", I'll have you know the study was technically legal. When you sign up for Facebook you give them permission to do stuff like this by being a member of their site. In fact, the only reason we know about this study is because Facebook just published a paper on it.