Group psychology as a science in the nineteenth century. He was born in the late twentieth century and described how a person gets angry or panicked in a group. A century later, science has revealed that the immensely popular social media does nothing but slightly serve and amplify human collective behavior.
Research by Yale University’s Department of Psychology, published in Science Advances in mid-August, also notes how all this happens in the process of analyzing Twitter users’ behavior.
The exclamation point counter is on
The influence of social media is changing the tone of political discourse
The conclusion of the paper is summarized by William Brady, the lead author of the thesis, who, with his colleagues, tried to reach the end of why social networks are flooded with moral outrage in parallel with the everyday domestic political situation.
Brady and Associate Professor Molly Crockett analyzed 12.7 million posts from 7,331 Twitter users between 2017 and 2019 using the software. They examined how often the authors expressed their anger and why.
The first 26,000 entries were processed by people who also taught a machine learning algorithm to indicate large text or a series of exclamation points.
It has less influence on extremists
The end result showed that angry posts were liked and shared more than once, which acted as feedback, and encouraged users to post more angry posts in the long run.
This phenomenon has led to political polarization, i.e., increasingly extremist attitudes, a clear but troubling line that rewarding anger affected moderates in political discourse more than those who were already radicalized.
Our research found that people with politically moderate friends and followers were more sensitive to social observations that reinforce their anger. This mechanism explains how previously more moderate groups became radicalized
Crockett explained that amplifying angry voices is neither good nor bad in and of itself.
Amplifying outrageous votes is a clear consequence of a social media business model optimized for user engagement. Since moral outrage plays an important role in political and social change, we need to raise awareness that tech companies have a say in the success or failure of social movements by operating their platforms.
Some platforms are already experimenting with aggressive behavior: for example, they ask the user
You don’t want to read the article you are about to share.
Brady says that the solution is not to hunt down angry posts, but rather it is crucial that users are more aware of the benefits of their anger and the impact of their posts.
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