Facebook digs through user data

Facebook released a graphical breakdown showing the collective happiness of the site's millions of active U.S. users.

The company combed its database of short user-updates and looked for words indicating a theme of happiness or sadness correlating to the day it was posted. The breakdown was released Monday.

What we learned from from the analysis of our nation's Web chatter: Holidays make people happy, celebrity deaths make people sad.

As Facebook notes, Thanksgiving and Christmas are some of the happiest days, while the deaths of Heath Ledger and Michael Jackson were among the lowest.

Indeed, the findings are completely obvious, but could become more interesting with years of data collection -- especially when aligned with economic indicators.

But, hey, do we really want Facebook to keep peering into updates meant just for friends and family? The research serves as a good reminder about cybersecurity -- after all, it is National Cybersecurity Month.


If you put something on Facebook, no matter how tight your privacy settings are, Facebook Inc. can still hang onto it, analyze it, remix it and repackage it.
Source LA TIMES

In other news, this British celebrity killed himself after updating his status message.

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