Facebook experiments on users
It has been revealed that in 2012 Facebook conducted a study on nearly 700,000 users whereby they manipulated newsfeeds so that only either positive or negative posts appeared, in order to see if the emotions were 'contagious'.
The researchers were from Cornell University and the study was published in the academic journal called the 'Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences '. The author of the article stated: “It makes me wonder what other kind of psychological manipulation users are subjected to that they never learn about because it isn’t published in an academic journal.”
The company's Data Use Policy was said to contain a line stating that users' data may be used for research purposes.
Kashmir Hill of Forbes said that, “Others, especially in the academic environment, are horrified that Facebook thinks that the little clause in the 9,045-word ToS counts as “informed consent”.
A Facebook spokesperson was quoted as saying: “This research was conducted for a single week in 2012 and none of the data used was associated with a specific person’s Facebook account... We carefully consider what research we do and have a strong internal review process. There is no unnecessary collection of people’s data in connection with these research initiatives and all data is stored securely.”
This story has been added to our corporate database. The database powers all our live product guides, giving the score for each company on our rankings tables. Find out more about how we rate companies.
Ethical Consumer on Google+