Exploring entrainment patterns of human emotion in social media

Saike He, Xiaolong Zheng, Dajun Zeng, Chuan Luo, Zhu Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Scopus citations

Abstract

Emotion entrainment, which is generally defined as the synchronous convergence of human emotions, performs many important social functions. However, what the specific mechanisms of emotion entrainment are beyond in-person interactions, and how human emotions evolve under different entrainment patterns in large-scale social communities, are still unknown. In this paper, we aim to examine the massive emotion entrainment patterns and understand the underlying mechanisms in the context of social media. As modeling emotion dynamics on a large scale is often challenging, we elaborate a pragmatic framework to characterize and quantify the entrainment phenomenon. By applying this framework on the datasets from two large-scale social media platforms, we find that the emotions of online users entrain through social networks. We further uncover that online users often form their relations via dual entrainment, while maintain it through single entrainment. Remarkably, the emotions of online users are more convergent in nonreciprocal entrainment. Building on these findings, we develop an entrainment augmented model for emotion prediction. Experimental results suggest that entrainment patterns inform emotion proximity in dyads, and encoding their associations promotes emotion prediction. This work can further help us to understand the underlying dynamic process of large-scale online interactions and make more reasonable decisions regarding emergency situations, epidemic diseases, and political campaigns in cyberspace.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0150630
JournalPLoS One
Volume11
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

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