[Social Psych] On Facebook, Emotions and Moods Are Catching

Boredom isn’t the only reason to block a chronic Debbie Downer in your News Feed on Facebook.

It turns out that emotions and moods have proven to have a ripple effect on the social network. And it’s not even a slight effect- the spread of negativity among Facebook friends was described as “like wildfire.” Neither was it a tiny sample group- 1 million users and their 150 million friends were analyzed to determine the “stickiness” of Facebitchiness.

Negative emotions weren’t the only ones to hold sway over friends’ subsequent status updates- positive emotions spread as well, but not nearly as prolifically. Facebook data scientist Adam Kramer commented on the study’s findings:

“Up to three days later, for people who use more negative words, their friends will also use more negative words,” Kramer says. “If people are using more positive words, not only are their friends using more positive words, their friends also will use fewer negative words.”

Do you have any friends who constantly beat the drum of woe on Facebook? Have you silenced them in your feed? Do you notice it bringing you down at all?

Kim LaCapria

Kim LaCapria is a social media enthusiast, long-time Inquisitr.com writer and beauty and lifestyle industry expert. She covers a wide range of social media topics, with a particular interest in style-related apps and services. When not working, Kim can be found on Facebook and Pinterest, skating, and sneaking off to Spa Castle.


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