The Corner

Culture

Social Media Makes You Angry, Stupid, and Sad

Facebook’s research catches up with my 2019 bookThe Smallest Minority. 

From the Wall Street Journal:

Facebook’s chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, said the aim of the algorithm change was to strengthen bonds between users and to improve their well-being. Facebook would encourage people to interact more with friends and family and spend less time passively consuming professionally produced content, which research suggested was harmful to their mental health.

Within the company, though, staffers warned the change was having the opposite effect, the documents show. It was making Facebook’s platform an angrier place.

Company researchers discovered that publishers and political parties were reorienting their posts toward outrage and sensationalism.

Sometimes, a great deal of data and research end up being deployed to confirm the utterly predictable.

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