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Experimental evidence of massive-scale emotional contagion through social networks

Experimental evidence of massive-scale emotional contagion through social networks
Author Affiliations Edited by Susan T. Fiske, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, and approved March 25, 2014 (received for review October 23, 2013) Significance We show, via a massive (N = 689,003) experiment on Facebook, that emotional states can be transferred to others via emotional contagion, leading people to experience the same emotions without their awareness. We provide experimental evidence that emotional contagion occurs without direct interaction between people (exposure to a friend expressing an emotion is sufficient), and in the complete absence of nonverbal cues. Abstract Emotional states can be transferred to others via emotional contagion, leading people to experience the same emotions without their awareness. Emotional states can be transferred to others via emotional contagion, leading them to experience the same emotions as those around them. Three studies have laid the groundwork for testing these processes via Facebook, the largest online social network. Fig. 1.

http://www.pnas.org/content/111/24/8788.full

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