Facebook Can Predict When A Couple Will Break Up [STUDY]


Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) has developed an algorithm that can identify who you are dating and if your relationship is heading towards a break up. According to a research paper published by Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) senior engineer Lars Backstrom and Cornell University scientist Jon Kleinberg, the method called “theory of dispersion” can identify your spouse or partner. The paper was published on Sunday. Researchers plan to present it at a conference in February.

Facebook Can Predict When A Couple Will Break Up [STUDY]

Facebook algorithm identifies your spouse with 60% accuracy

The researchers analyzed the data of 1.3 million Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) users who had listed their relationship status as “Married” or “In a relationship.” They analyzed 8.6 billion links over the past two years. All the users were above 20 years and had 50 to 2,000 friends. They predicted break ups with the help of the users’ mutual friend circle.

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According to the theory of dispersion, couples with high dispersion rate have mutual friends that aren’t well connected. In contrast, mutual friends of couples with low dispersion are very well connected. Couples with low dispersion are more vulnerable to break up because they are far less likely to have their own lives. Those with high dispersion have healthy relationships and friendships in a number of different groups of people. Researchers noted that a romantic partner or spouse acts as a bridge between a person’s different social worlds.

Using this theory, Kleinberg and Backstrom identified a user’s spouse or romantic partner with 60% accuracy. Random guessing would have given them less than 2% accuracy. Researchers also found that, if their algorithm failed to guess who you’re dating, you are 50% more likely to break up in less than 2 months.

Facebook found dispersion to be the best metric

Scientists also used other metrics such as messages sent, attendance to the same events, and the number of times a user viewed another’s profile. But dispersion emerged as the most accurate metric to assess romantic relationships.

Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) has more than 1.2 billion users. So, it has been used as the platform for several studies. In the past, researchers have found that using the social networking site frequently can make you feel lonely and envious.

Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) shares were up 1.12% to $49.95 in pre-market trading.

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