Facebook ‘likes’ can predict someone’s personality

Facebook ‘likes’ can predict someone’s personality

New research has claimed that the status updates, products, pages and photographs which users ‘like’ on Facebook can give a sound insight into their personalities.


Researchers from the University of Cambridge found that such information as religion, politics, race and sexual orientation can be accurately gleaned simply by looking at likes alone, and business posts.ie reports.

The study saw some 58,000 volunteers provide their Facebook likes and demographic information. This was then cross-referenced with the results of psychometric tests which are designed to identify an individual’s personality.

All of this data was then processed by an algorithm which found it could predict people’s personalities with surprising accuracy using only Facebook likes.

The result could prove positive for marketers who may also be able to utilize sample likes in their social media strategy to ensure content is targeted and relevant.

Where male sexuality was concerned, the algorithm was correct 88 per cent of the time. When it came to defining Caucasians from African-Americans it got the right result 95 per cent of the time. It could also define right and left-wing political leaning 85 per cent of the time.

Meanwhile, Christians and Muslims correctly identified 82 per cent of the time whilst relationship status – looking at likes alone and not the status bar – was accurate in 65 per cent of cases. It could even identify potential substance abusers with an accuracy of 73 per cent.

The study also threw up a few odd results, as research author David Stillwell told bbc.co.uk: “Curly fries correlated to high intelligence and people who liked the Dark Knight tended to have fewer Facebook friends.”