Happy Thoughts Spread Faster On Twitter, Says USC Study

A new study, published by researchers at the University of Southern California, says that positive emotions are more contagious than negative ones on Twitter. The study--which came out of the USC Viterbi School of Engineering's Information Sciences Institute--correlated the tweets spread by users with the prior positive or negative tweets, based on what had appeared in those same users' stream the prior hour. The study said that about 20 percent of users were "highly susceptible" to something it called "emotional contagion", where they were much more susceptible to emotional influence than other users. The researchers at USC, led by computer scientist Emilio Ferrara, said that the study is relevant to plan interventions on users experiencing depression or other forms of mood disorders. The study was published online at PLOS.