Personality & Facebook

Determining Personality Traits and Privacy Concerns from Facebook Activity

The OPF Big 5 Personality Experiment looked at what someone’s Facebook activity could say about their personality (especially, to those who might be looking but without asking).

Among other things, our research indicated that Facebook snooping recruiters should ditch the habit.

OPF Commentary:

Just how accurate is Facebook personality prediction? Our study re-affirms that there is a relationship between Facebook activity and personality types. However, it is clear that the strength of that relationship is not a strong enough basis on which to make critical decisions about individual users. Read more

Press Release: Snooping bosses should ditch the Facebook habit: Many recruiters want to know what really makes us tick by putting a magnifying glass to what we are up to on social networking sites. But new research by the Online Privacy Foundation has revealed just how well others can judge our personalities by looking us up on Facebook. While bosses should beware jumping to the wrong conclusions, we still could be revealing far too much about who we are to others. Read more


Wald, R.,  Khoshgoftaar, T, M., and Sumner, C. (2012). Machine Prediction of Personality from Facebook Profiles, 13th IEEE International Conference on Information Reuse and Integration, 2012, pp. 109-115. Paper via IEEE | Google Scholar

Sumner, C., Byers, A., & Shearing, M. (2011). Determining personality traits & privacy concerns from Facebook activity. Black Hat Briefings ’11. Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.    Paper  | Google ScholarRead More 

Presentation Slides:

‘Determining personality traits and privacy concerns from Facebook activity’, 2011. Presentation Slides

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