Facebook, Sentiment Analysis, and Emotional Contagion

Sentiment analysis and emotional contagion are nothing new, but Facebook’s recent research study, dubbed by the media the “emotion manipulation” study has launched heated debates regarding the accuracy of the research and the ethics of performing experiments on people without their knowledge or consent. Sentiment analysis is the study of positive and negative words in communication and has been employed in various fields, including traditional and social media marketing, brand analysis, poll predicting, and even dream analysis. In today’s big-data-driven world, algorithms are used to analyze text in an effort to distinguish what emotions are behind the words. As the algorithms improve, the analysis will as well, but some argue that the algorithms are far from where they need to be for accurate analysis. Recently, Facebook conducted a sentiment analysis on possible emotional contagion via status messages. Emotional contagion has been theorized for centuries and continues to be researched heavily by modern psychologists such as Elaine Hatfield of the University of Hawaii, who states that emotional contagion, “may tell us something about the awesome contemporary power of celebrityhood and of the mass media as these agencies of large-scale emotional and cognitive contagion continue to expand their capacities to define reality for billions of people.” However, the media and thousands of Facebook users were not convinced that Facebook’s expanded capacities were worth their feeds being “manipulated” to mine and influence their emotional responses. The controversy stems from how Facebook used sentiment analysis to perform research into emotional contagion, whether their findings were scientifically accurate, and whether they violated peoples’ rights. It all began with a simple study, made public back...

Twitter Users Have a Lot to Say About the Redesign (Shocker.)

Your Twitter profile page is about to look a lot like Facebook, and chances are, you have a pretty strong opinion about it. Nearly two months after the company quietly tested a new layout among a small group of users, news first reported by Mashable, Twitter is officially rolling out a new design starting on Tuesday. Social media users are notoriously adverse to change, with the slightest update often awakening the most critical of members, so it's not surprising the news brought a bevy of negative reactions, mostly with users calling it out as too similar to Facebook. SEE ALSO: 14 Facebook Tools You Didn't Know Existed Read more...More about Facebook, Twitter, Social Media, and Dev...

Facebook Continues Redesign Rollout With New Look for Pages

Facebook redesigned its news feed last week, but the company isn't stopping there. Next up for a makeover is Facebook Pages Facebook announced a new look for Pages on Monday, changing the appearance for both Page visitors and Page admins to what the company is calling a more "streamlined" look. See also: Facebook Unveils News Feed Redesign, One Year Later The new design includes two columns similar to the old version, but the right column is now the Page's timeline and the left includes information about the brand or corporation. In the previous design, both columns served as the Timeline; posts were staggered between the left and right columns as users scrolled down Read more...More about Redesign, Facebook, News Feed, Pages, and Social...

Pinterest Announces Unlimited Secret Boards

Pinterest announced Friday that users can now have an unlimited amount of secret boards Previously, a user could only have six secret boards. But users loved the feature so much that the company finally gave in to the frequent requests for an unlimited option See also: 7 Ideas for Your First Pinterest Secret Board “While people are increasingly using secret boards to pin, they’re also continuing to be active with public boards,” a Pinterest spokesperson told Mashable First unveiled in 2012, Pinterest secret boards allowed a user to have three secret boards in order to hide their secret events or surprise parties from friends and family. In November, Pinterest increased the number of secret boards to six Read more...More about Software, Social Media, Pinterest, Tech, and Apps...

UIEtips: Content Marketing Sustains the Conversation

In today’s UIEtips, Ahava Leibtag shares an excerpt from Chapter 9 of her book, The Digital Crown: Winning at Content on the Web, to explain the challenges content marketing can solve and the set of tools it provides you. If you’re looking to expand upon traditional content strategy-both external (branding, messaging, tone) and internal (governance, workflows)-by folding UX into the conversation, you’ll want to join us on February 20, when Ahava presents her virtual seminar, Designing Effective Content Marketing. Here’s an excerpt from the article: As a UX, web and communications professional, you have daily challenges that are ever present on any given day. Today’s technologies are so fast, and accessibility to information so consistent and portable, that capturing your audiences’ attention and focus seems like an insurmountable problem. Everyone says content is the solution, but when you try to find new ways to manage it in your organization, you feel like you’re fighting an ancient beast from the deep. Why is content so hard? How do you lasso this monstrous beast and align your content developments to your business objectives? And what’s this new thing everyone is talking about called content marketing? Read the article Content Marketing Sustains the Conversation. How does your organization align content development with business objectives?  Tell us about it...