Multilevel emotion transfer on YouTube: Disentangling the effects of emotional contagion and homophily on video audiences

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Why do connected users in online social networks express similar emotions? Past approaches have suggested situational emotion transfers (i.e., contagion) and the phenomenon that emotionally similar users flock together (i.e., homophily). We analyze these mechanisms in unison by exploiting the hierarchical structure of YouTube through multilevel analyses, disaggregating the video- and channel-level effects of YouTuber emotions on audience comments. Dictionary analyses using the NRC emotion lexica were used to measure the emotions expressed in videos and user comments from 2,083 YouTube vlogs (selected from 110 vloggers). We find that video- and channel-level emotions independently influence audience emotions, providing evidence for both contagion and homophily effects. Random slope models suggest that contagion strength varies between YouTube channels for some emotions. However, neither dispositional channel-level emotions nor number of subscribers significantly moderate the strength of contagion effects. The present study highlights that contagion and homophily independently shape emotions in online social networks.
Original languageEnglish
JournalSocial Psychological and Personality Science
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2019

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Expressed Emotion

Keywords

  • Emotion transfer
  • Multilevel analysis
  • Contagion
  • YouTube
  • Homophily

Cite this

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title = "Multilevel emotion transfer on YouTube: Disentangling the effects of emotional contagion and homophily on video audiences",
abstract = "Why do connected users in online social networks express similar emotions? Past approaches have suggested situational emotion transfers (i.e., contagion) and the phenomenon that emotionally similar users flock together (i.e., homophily). We analyze these mechanisms in unison by exploiting the hierarchical structure of YouTube through multilevel analyses, disaggregating the video- and channel-level effects of YouTuber emotions on audience comments. Dictionary analyses using the NRC emotion lexica were used to measure the emotions expressed in videos and user comments from 2,083 YouTube vlogs (selected from 110 vloggers). We find that video- and channel-level emotions independently influence audience emotions, providing evidence for both contagion and homophily effects. Random slope models suggest that contagion strength varies between YouTube channels for some emotions. However, neither dispositional channel-level emotions nor number of subscribers significantly moderate the strength of contagion effects. The present study highlights that contagion and homophily independently shape emotions in online social networks.",
keywords = "Emotion transfer, Multilevel analysis, Contagion, YouTube, Homophily",
author = "H. Rosenbusch and A.M. Evans and M. Zeelenberg",
year = "2019",
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journal = "Social Psychological and Personality Science",
issn = "1948-5506",
publisher = "Sage Publications, Inc.",

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TY - JOUR

T1 - Multilevel emotion transfer on YouTube

T2 - Disentangling the effects of emotional contagion and homophily on video audiences

AU - Rosenbusch, H.

AU - Evans, A.M.

AU - Zeelenberg, M.

PY - 2019

Y1 - 2019

N2 - Why do connected users in online social networks express similar emotions? Past approaches have suggested situational emotion transfers (i.e., contagion) and the phenomenon that emotionally similar users flock together (i.e., homophily). We analyze these mechanisms in unison by exploiting the hierarchical structure of YouTube through multilevel analyses, disaggregating the video- and channel-level effects of YouTuber emotions on audience comments. Dictionary analyses using the NRC emotion lexica were used to measure the emotions expressed in videos and user comments from 2,083 YouTube vlogs (selected from 110 vloggers). We find that video- and channel-level emotions independently influence audience emotions, providing evidence for both contagion and homophily effects. Random slope models suggest that contagion strength varies between YouTube channels for some emotions. However, neither dispositional channel-level emotions nor number of subscribers significantly moderate the strength of contagion effects. The present study highlights that contagion and homophily independently shape emotions in online social networks.

AB - Why do connected users in online social networks express similar emotions? Past approaches have suggested situational emotion transfers (i.e., contagion) and the phenomenon that emotionally similar users flock together (i.e., homophily). We analyze these mechanisms in unison by exploiting the hierarchical structure of YouTube through multilevel analyses, disaggregating the video- and channel-level effects of YouTuber emotions on audience comments. Dictionary analyses using the NRC emotion lexica were used to measure the emotions expressed in videos and user comments from 2,083 YouTube vlogs (selected from 110 vloggers). We find that video- and channel-level emotions independently influence audience emotions, providing evidence for both contagion and homophily effects. Random slope models suggest that contagion strength varies between YouTube channels for some emotions. However, neither dispositional channel-level emotions nor number of subscribers significantly moderate the strength of contagion effects. The present study highlights that contagion and homophily independently shape emotions in online social networks.

KW - Emotion transfer

KW - Multilevel analysis

KW - Contagion

KW - YouTube

KW - Homophily

M3 - Article

JO - Social Psychological and Personality Science

JF - Social Psychological and Personality Science

SN - 1948-5506

ER -