Who knew!

I first came across the discussion about what your Facebook likes reveal about you, on the CBC Website and The Current with Anna Maria Tremonte

The Psycometrics Centre at Cambridge University has found that you can predict your personality traits quite accurately by analyzing the pages you liked on Facebook.

This sounds like the same kind of “profiling” we experience from the way Google, Facebook and other places show you the ads that will likely be appealing to you. A lot of people have reacted negatively to this news – I take it more as a side-effect and sign that the revolution of the digital age affects all areas of our lives.

The researchers have found that events in your life leave traces in your opinions and the topics you are drawn to. So in turn the pages you like, the causes that are important to you, and I suppose the friends you have tell a story.

Let’s put this to the test:

Today I found a website called You Are What You Like.com (kudos to whoever registered that url!). You simply authorize the tool to snoop around in your profile and within seconds you get the results. Here are mine:

you are what you like results

As far as I can say, this is pretty accurate – my partner may or may not agree! Although I should note the tool only took into account 10% of the pages I liked.

Like it or not (pun boldly accepted) there is real science behind this and the UOC Psychometrics Centre invites us to take part in a wider study.

[box type=”note”]What Do you think? Creepy or cool?
Let me know[/box]


Published by Frithjof

Digital media strategist, coach, community manager and CEO of BlueBird Business Consulting. Blogger, podcaster, content creator and teacher with a passion. Favourite quote: “To succeed in the business of the future we have to become the very people we are trying to reach” ~ Brian Solis

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Ryan!
      I find it interesting how our perception changes over time. A few years ago I would have been cheeped out over anybody tracking my activities. Today, after some years of living a fairly public life on Social Media I don’t feel that strongly anymore. It’s either a mind-set thing or I’m just getting old 🙂

  1. An interesting article; thanks also for sharing the radio broadcast too.

    No-one is forcing us to ‘like’, ‘follow’, ‘share’ or ‘retweet’ anything; it is activity that we take upon ourselves voluntarily. We have all succumbed, to varying degrees, the exhibitionism that prevalent in western society. If we get profiled from expressing ourselves on social networks, so be it.

    However, there has to be a clear idea who is using this data for profiling people. As the radio programme highlights, could employers subtly enact a form of discrimination by determining whether applicants for a job is homosexual, for example, using Facebook profiling?

    I think we’ll soon be entering an era of greater self-censorship, and it will be interesting to see how this will change the way we express ourselves online. It will probably make us less honest, if truth be told.

    1. Thanks for your insightful comment Nick!
      We are living in times of rapid transformation in all areas of our lives. We will go through phases of over-sharing and being overly careful.
      Right now I think the most important thing is that we have a choice of what we want to do or not do. I feel strongly that this is what we have to preserve.

      1. I totally agree – there is so much info and data I think we are forced to start trusting others to help distill all this info into simple lessons & learning. So we search for those with authority and trust to take the load of all that info & data blasting us everyday.

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