Issue #379

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Facebook to data-mine for your political views

Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg
Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook is mining its data of user’s posts to find out how users feel about certain candidates or issues and sharing that data with ABC News and BuzzFeed for use in their 2016 reporting, the social networking site will announce on Friday. The data will be gathered from the posts of Facebook users in the United States 18 and older, classifying sentiments about a politician or issue as positive, negative, or neutral. The data can also be broken down into sentiments by gender and location, making it possible to see how Facebook users in the key primary states of Iowa or New Hampshire feel about certain presidential candidates, or how women in Florida feel about same-sex marriage. ABC News will start using the data next week as part of their 2014 Election Day coverage, and will focus on possible 2016 presidential candidates. BuzzFeed will focus on using the data around issues in ongoing stories, and will feature the data in their news app. Politico, 10-30-14.

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