Social networking giant Facebook conducted a psychological experiment to the users, who had no idea that their news feeds were being manipulated to study their emotional reactions. The experiment was conducted over one week in January 2012 and over six lakh random users participated in this.
This was made official in the June 17 edition of the journal, Proceedings of the National Academy of Scientists [PNAS] in the US. The study reported that users who saw more negative posts would write more negative things on their own walls, and likewise for positive feeds. The users were completely unaware of this experiment which turned out to be a major issue.
As the criticism for all corners grew, Facebook defended its decision and a Facebook spokesman said, “We do research to improve our services and make the content people see on Facebook as relevant and engaging as possible….We carefully consider what research we do and have a strong internal review process.”