If you spend hours composing your Facebook status because you want to project a certain image to the world, you might be on to something. A group of scientists who call themselves the World Well-Being Project are conducting an ongoing analysis of Facebook statuses from around the globe. So far, their data has yielded some fascinating correlations between what people post on Facebook and different personality archetypes.
In order to participate in the project, people must download the Facebook app My Personality, which administers a standard personality test. Once that's complete, participants have their Facebook statuses analyzed, a process that 75,000 people have undergone to date. At this point, the researchers have published six studies, and the results are as expected: People who were classified as extroverts tend to use words associated with a lifestyle based on having having fun, like "party," "chillin," and "weekend." Introverts are more likely to use words that signify solitude, such as "computer," "reading," and (surprisingly?) "Pokemon."
The results are somewhat predictable, but that's a good thing for scientists who rely on social media as a cost-effective way of conducting surveys. It means that when analyzed, our collective use of social platforms provides real insight into who we are behind the tweet / status update / Instagram photo.
For more of what the World Well-Being Project found, click here, and to see some examples of their findings, click through. (The Atlantic)