‘Emotional contagion’ sweeps Facebook

Emotions spread between Facebook users much the same way diseases spread between people, a new study has found.

Researchers reduced the amount of either positive or negative stories that appeared in the news feed of 689,000 randomly selected Facebook users for one week, and found the so-called “emotional contagion” effect worked both ways.

People who had positive content reduced on their Facebook news feed used more negative words in their status updates, while those with negative content reduced showed more positive words in their updates.

The study is the first to suggest emotions expressed online affect the moods of other users.

Read more at Cornell University