The Online Social Self: An Open Vocabulary Approach to Personality

The Online Social Self: An Open Vocabulary Approach to Personality

By
Michal Kosinski, Margaret L. Kern, Johannes C. Eichstaedt, Andrew H. Schwartz, Lukasz Dziurznski, Lyle H. Ungar, David J. Stillwell, Stephanie M. Ramones, Martin E.P. Seligman
Assessment. December
8, 2013, Vol. 2, Issue 2, Pages 158-169

Objective: We present a new open language analysis approach that identifies and visually summarizes the dominant naturally occurring words and phrases that most distinguished each Big Five personality trait. Method: Using millions of posts from 69,792 Facebook users, we examined the correlation of personality traits with online word usage. Our analysis method consists of feature extraction, correlational analysis, and visualization. Results: The distinguishing words and phrases were face valid and provide insight into processes that underlie the Big Five traits. Conclusion: Open-ended data driven exploration of large datasets combined with established psychological theory and measures offers new tools to further understand the human psyche.