Professor Sinan Aral was featured in Science News as an expert on social networks. He commented on a University of Cambridge research study that found correlations between Facebook likes and personality attributes.
Excerpt from Science News:
The study’s methods are sound, says New York University’s Sinan Aral, an expert on information diffusion in social networks. But the computer performed best on somewhat obvious traits, such as gender, age, and race. Since the researchers didn’t compare the technique with any others, he says, it’s hard to know how its predictive power would stack up against correlations based on other easily available data such as census information and voting records.
“If I wanted to predict your political affiliation and I knew just your age, your state and your gender, or any two of those three, could I do just as well?” Aral asks.
He adds that all of the data come from people who are willing to share information about themselves and take a lot of online tests. The volunteers may not represent the average Facebook user. But that weakness might not matter to marketers.
Read the full article at sciencenews.org