Attributional dynamics of smartphone use

Why do people believe the phone is additive? In this project. one of our primary research questions is whether beliefs that the mobile phone is addictive is rooted not only people’s own experience with the phone.

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“Silvers” and technology

The goal of this research program is to better understand what adults over 65, “silvers,” think and feel about technology, how they engage with potentially harmful content online, and how we might be able to leverage the wisdom and experience of this population to empower them in their use of new technologies.

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Political search media

In a recent and ongoing project on political search media, we collect and analyze data from search engines’ results pages for queries related to political issues, such as the names of political candidates running for office. This project combines technological expertise in systems-building (to build web scrapers and computationally analyze the resulting large-scale data) with relevant theories from communication and political science. Among other findings, we identify differences in search media by candidate status comparing incumbents,

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Social media mindsets

Is using social media helpful or harmful to your well-being? Our research suggests the answer may be a matter of mindset. We investigate how the beliefs and expectations we have about the impact of using social media can affect our health – independent of how much you actually use social media. In addition, we propose a novel theoretical framework for understanding how our beliefs about our own social media use differ from our beliefs about how other people and companies use social media.

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AI mediated communication

AI-MC is mediated communication between people in which a computational agent operates on behalf of a communicator by modifying, augmenting, or generating messages to accomplish communication or interpersonal goals. Simple systems like predictive text, as well as more advanced algorithms that underly smart replies and profile suggestions, are examples of AI technologies that operate in human communication between people. We are interested in how AI-MC can influence interpersonal dynamics and linguistic features in conversations.

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Social robots as media

Robots are poised to play an important role in social life. Surprisingly, to date we know surprisingly little about the psychological, social or emotional responses to robots. We propose a novel robot-as-media theoretical framework for understanding how people perceive robots. We have explored media characteristics, personality and psychological dimensions and social contexts for images of social robots derived from published research over the last decade.

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Folk theory of cyber-social systems

People’s beliefs and behaviors are shaped by their understanding of how systems work, also known as folk theories. These systems include social systems, such as understanding the behavior of others, physical systems, such as gravity, as well as cyber-social systems, that have both social and digital components. The Stanford Social Media Lab is interested in identifying people’s folk theory of cyber-social systems and the effects folk theories have on people’s behavior (e.g., how people engage in self-presentation,

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Truth, trust, and technology

We investigate how people lie and detect deception with technology. Our research suggests that lies are not more prevalent online than offline (see Guillory & Hancock, 2012; Markowitz & Hancock, 2016), but instead, deception is represented differently when technology is involved.

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Fake news and language

This project revolves around fake news, discusses the differences between distorted/ dishonest misinformation and blatantly deceptive news, and investigates language features of dishonest political news articles from the psychological aspects.

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Language and social dynamics

What do words suggest about people and their experiences? We use language as a lens into psychological events and social interactions. Our approach uses computational tools to gather and examine language data, from online reviews to science papers.

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Meta-analysis

The Stanford Social Media Lab is working on a large-scale meta-analysis to understand what is the effect of social media use and well-being across the literature, as well as understand how the effect differs across methodologies, platform of study, and social  media behavior.

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Disclosure to conversational agents

Disclosure, or revealing personal information about oneself, has been found to lead to a wide range of benefits, including increased psychological and physical health. Currently, we are investigating what occurs when disclosing in such a way to a form of technology, rather than to another person.

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Technology’s role in mental health crisis recognition and intervention

Technology plays a prominent role in how people access and understand their own health. The Social media lab conducts studies on the role of conversational agents in recognizing and responding to health crises such as self harm or sexual violence.

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