It's Science: Facebook Knows You Better Than Your Friends

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It's Science: Facebook Knows You Better Than Your Friends Image Source: LinkedIn

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If you've liked more than 70 items on Facebook, it knows you better than your friends. Image Source: Flickr/Erik Cleves Kritensen

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150 likes and it knows you better than your family. Image Source: Flickr/James Thompson

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300 likes and it knows you better than your spouse. Image Source: Flickr/Brian Tomlinson

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That's according to a recent study from researchers at University of Cambridge and Stanford University. Source: PNAS

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When Facebook announced its 1 billionth user in 2012 ...

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When Facebook announced its 1 billionth user in 2012 ... It also said it had accumulated over 1.13 trillion likes. Source: Facebook

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Keep in mind likes have only been around since 2009, so the average is likely even higher today.

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Suffice it to say, Facebook probably knows your personality better than anyone in the world.

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So, what can Facebook do with all its data?

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It can show you more interesting items in your News Feed.

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It can use the data to target advertisements.

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And ad targeting is improving. Average ad revenue per user increased 27% last quarter Ad prices increased 220%

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But Facebook's personality data coupled with its social graph could enable Facebook to enter other verticals.

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It could license its data to researchers and organizations that require people to submit personality profiles.

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Twitter generated over $100 million from licensing its data last year.

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And Facebook has five-times as many users.

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Facebook could create a recruiting platform to connect users with jobs that suit their personality.

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LinkedIn generated $1.3 billion from its Talent Solutions product last year.

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And its users are hardly engaged compared to Facebook.

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Facebook could even build a dating app to take advantage of its personality data and social graph.

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The online dating industry generated $2.2 billion in the U.S. alone last year. Source: Washington Post

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Few other companies can boast personality profiles as accurate as Facebook's.

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Search history is another good indicator of personality.

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As is purchase history.

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Facebook is working to enter both of those markets.

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And its reach is as wide as any company in the world.

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So, it knows more about more people than anyone in the world.

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And it understands you better every day.

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The researchers believe that increasing the number of likes beyond what was available in the study could further boost the accuracy of their personality model.

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So, click that Facebook like button!

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