Software created by IBM is being used to deduce the personality of a Twitter user by identifying patterns in the use of words.

The analysis of behavior in social networks is a common practice in the online advertising industry. Segmentation based on this data has become another element to sharpen marketing and advertising companies on the internet. Almaden Research Center in California has developed a program able to infer the personality of a Twitter user based on their updates.

The new system is able to discover the behavior of the users and to determine their personality. IBM believes that their software might have some application in social media marketing, online marketing campaigns and even customer service.

The company’s researchers have created a program able to analyze a user’s tweets and classify it based on basic psychological characteristics. The profile then is made consisting of five traits rated according to information from Twitter updates – such as extroversion, kindness, responsibility, open-mindedness and instability.

Apart from this basic classification, the system also decodes values, such as conservatism, needs and interests or curiosity. This allows companies to identify how the user acts, not only how they behave in social media. For this reason it is easier to draw conclusions on how users will respond to advertising.

The IBM software development was initially carried out during an investigation in which volunteers answered psychological questionnaires. The results were compared with the activity of their Twitter profile and the program looked for patterns in the use of words, comparing the information obtained after the questionnaires.

Once built the software was tested with 300 people. Their results agreed more than 80 % with the profile derived from the analysis of their tweets.
What do you think about the use of this software?
Would you consider it invasive?
As a business owner would you consider this information useful?

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