Multimedia Tools and Applications

, Volume 75, Issue 21, pp 13237–13269 | Cite as

Personality assessment using multiple online social networks

  • Shally Bhardwaj
  • Pradeep K. Atrey
  • Mukesh K. Saini
  • Abdulmotaleb El Saddik


Personality plays an important role in various aspects of our daily life. It is being used in many application scenarios such as i) personalized marketing and advertisement of commercial products, ii) designing personalized ambient environments, iii) personalized avatars in virtual world, and iv) by psychologists to treat various mental and personality disorders. Traditional methods of personality assessment require a long questionnaire to be completed, which is time consuming. On the other hand, several works have been published that seek to acquire various personality traits by analyzing Internet usage statistics. Researchers have used Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and various other websites to collect usage statistics. However, we are still far from a successful outcome. This paper uses a range of divergent features of Facebook and LinkedIn social networks, both separately and collectively, in order to achieve better results. In this work, the big five personality trait model is used to analyze the five traits: openness to experience, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism. The experimental results show that the accuracy of personality detection improves with the use of complementary features of multiple social networks (Facebook and LinkedIn, in our case) for openness, conscientiousness, agreeableness, and neuroticism. However, for extroversion we found that the use of only LinkedIn features provides better results than the use of only Facebook features or both Facebook and LinkedIn features.


Online social networks Personality Facebook LinkedIn 


  1. 1.
    Amichai-Hamburger Y (2002) Internet and personality. Comput Hum Behav 18 (1):1–10CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Amichai-Hamburger Y (2005) Personality and the internet. The social net: Human behavior in cyberspace, pp 27–55Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Amichai-Hamburger Y, Ben-Artzi E (2000) The relationship between extraversion and neuroticism and the different uses of the internet. Comput Hum Behav 16(4):441–449CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Amichai-Hamburger Y, Vinitzky G (2010) Social network use and personality. Comput Hum Behav 26(6):1289–1295CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Amichai-Hamburger Y, Kaplan H, Dorpatcheon N (2008) Click to the past: The impact of extroversion by users of nostalgic websites on the use of internet social services. Comput Hum Behav 24(5):1907–1912CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Association for Psychological Science. Marketing is more effective when targeted to personality profiles. ScienceDaily. 21 May 2012., Last accessed on December 10, 2014
  7. 7.
    Bachrach Y, Kosinski M, Graepel T, Kohli P, Stillwell D (2012) Personality and patterns of facebook usage. In: Proceedings of the 3rd annual ACM web science conference, Evanston, pp 24–32Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Back MD, Stopfer JM, Vazire S, Gaddis S, Schmukle SC, Egloff B, Gosling SD (2010) Facebook profiles reflect actual personality, not self-idealization. Psychol Sci 21(3):372–374CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Bai S, Zhu T, Cheng L (2012) Big-five personality prediction based on user behaviors at social network sites. arXiv preprint arXiv:1204.4809
  10. 10.
    Bhardwaj S, Saini MK, Atrey PK, El Saddik A (2013) Personalized ambient environments using multiple social networks. In: Proceedings of the 2nd IEEE ICME international workshop on ambient multimedia and sensory environment (AMUSE’14), Chengdu, pp 180–185Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Big five personality factor., Last accessed on December 10, 2014
  12. 12.
    Birknerová Z, Bačík R, Gburová J (2013) The effectiveness of advertising in relation to the personality of the consumer. J Financ Econ 1(2):17–21CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Block J (1995) A contrarian view of the five-factor approach to personality description. Psychol Bull 117(2):187CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Blumer T, Döring N (2012) Are we the same online? The expression of the five factor personality traits on the computer and the Internet. Cyberpsychol J Psychosoc Res Cyberspace 6(3)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Brody N, Ehrlichman H (1998) Personality psychology: The science of individuality, vol 3. Prentice Hall Englewood Cliffs, NJ. Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Busato VV, Prins FJ, Elshout JJ, Hamaker C (2000) Intellectual ability, learning style, personality, achievement motivation and academic success of psychology students in higher education. Personal Individ Differ 29(6):1057–1068CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Capara GV, Barbaranelli C, Zimbardo PG (1999) Personality profiles and political parties. Pol Psychol 20(1):175–197CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Chamorro-Premuzic T (2007) Personality and individual differences. Blackwell PublishingGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Cherry K Trait theory of personality., Last accessed on December 10, 2014
  20. 20.
    Correa T, Hinsley AW, De Zuniga HG (2010) Who interacts on the web? The intersection of users personality and social media use. Comput Hum Behav 26 (2):247–253CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Costa PT, McCrae RR (1988) Personality in adulthood: a six-year longitudinal study of self-reports and spouse ratings on the neo personality inventory. J Pers Soc Psychol 54(5):853CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Costa PT, McCrae RR (1992) Normal personality assessment in clinical practice: the neo personality inventory. Psychol Assess 4(1):5CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Duggan and Smith. Social media update., Last accessed on December 10, 2014
  24. 24.
    Fowles DC (1987) Application of a behavioral theory of motivation to the concepts of anxiety and impulsivity. J Res Pers 21(4):417–435CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Global Faces and Networked Places. A Nielsen report on social networkings new global footprint, March 2009., Last accessed on December 10, 2014
  26. 26.
    Global Faces and Networked Places. What do personality traits tell us about consumer behavior?, Last accessed on December 10, 2014
  27. 27.
    Golbeck J, Robles C, Edmondson M, Turner K (2011) Predicting personality from twitter. In: Proceedings of the Third IEEE International Conference on Privacy, Security, Risk and Trust (PASSAT) and 3rd IEEE International Conference on Social Computing (SocialCom), Boston, pp 149–156Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Golbeck J, Robles C, Turner K (2011) Predicting personality with social media. In: Proceedings of the ACM CHI’11 extended abstracts on human factors in computing systems, Vancouver, pp 253–262Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Guadagno RE, Okdie BM, Eno CA (2008) Who blogs? Personality predictors of blogging. Comput Hum Behav 24(5):1993–2004CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Hardie E, Tee MY (2007) Excessive internet use: the role of personality, loneliness and social support networks in internet addiction. Aust J Emerg Technol Soc 5(1):34–47Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Haugtvedt C, Petty RE, Cacioppo JT, Steidley T (1988) Personality and ad effectiveness: exploring the utility of need for cognition. Adv Consum Res 15:209–212Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    Hirsh JB, DeYoung CG, Xu X, Peterson JB (2010) Compassionate liberals and polite conservatives: associations of agreeableness with political ideology and moral values. Personal Soc Psychol Bull 36(5):655–664CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Hirsh JB, Kang SK, Bodenhausen GV (2012) Personalized persuasion tailoring persuasive appeals to recipients personality traits. Psychol Sci 23(6):578–581CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Holzwarth M, Janiszewski C, Neumann MM (2006) The influence of avatars on online consumer shopping behavior. J Mark 70(4):19–36CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Iacobelli F, Gill AJ, Nowson S, Oberlander J (2011) Large scale personality classification of bloggers. In: Proceedings of the affective computing and intelligent interaction. Springer, pp 568–577Google Scholar
  36. 36.
    John OD Big five personality test, 2000.
  37. 37.
    Judge TA, Bono JE (2000) Five-factor model of personality and transformational leadership. J Appl Psychol 85(5):751–765CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Larsen RJ, Ketelaar T (1989) Extraversion, neuroticism and susceptibility to positive and negative mood induction procedures. Personal Individ Differ 10 (12):1221–1228CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. 39.
    Larsen RJ, Ketelaar T (1991) Personality and susceptibility to positive and negative emotional states. J Pers Soc Psychol 61(1):132CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. 40.
    Li L, Yang Y, Mingxin L (2006) The relationship between adolescents’ neuroticism, internet service preference, and internet addiction. Acta Psychol Sin 3:008Google Scholar
  41. 41.
    Mehroof M, Griffiths MD (2010) Online gaming addiction: The role of sensation seeking, self-control, neuroticism, aggression, state anxiety, and trait anxiety. Cyberpsychol Behav Soc Netw 13(3):313–316CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. 42.
    Milutinovi V, Kartelj A, Filipovi V (2012) Novel approaches to automated personality classification: ideas and their potentials. In: Proceedings of the 35th international convention, MIPRO. IEEE, pp 1017–1022Google Scholar
  43. 43.
    Pennebaker JW, Mehl MR, Niederhoffer KG (2003) Psychological aspects of natural language use: Our words, our selves. Annu Rev Psychol 54(1):547–577CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. 44.
    Quercia D, Kosinski M, Stillwell D, Crowcroft J (2011) Our twitter profiles, our selves: Predicting personality with twitter. In: Proceedings of the 3rd IEEE international conference on privacy, security, risk and trust (PASSAT) and 3rd IEEE international conference on social computing (SocialCom), Boston, pp 180–185Google Scholar
  45. 45.
    Roberts BW, Kuncel NR, Shiner R, Caspi A, Goldberg LR (2007) The power of personality: The comparative validity of personality traits, socioeconomic status, and cognitive ability for predicting important life outcomes. Perspect Psychol Sci 2 (4):313–345CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. 46.
    Ross C, Orr ES, Sisic M, Arseneault JM, Simmering MG, Orr RR (2009) Personality and motivations associated with facebook use. Comput Hum Behav 25(2):578–586CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. 47.
    Suh K-S, Kim H, Suh EK (2011) What if your avatar looks like you? Dual-congruity perspectives for avatar use. MIS Q 35(3):711–729Google Scholar
  48. 48.
    Tausczik YR, Pennebaker JW (2010) The psychological meaning of words: Liwc and computerized text analysis methods. J Lang Soc Psychol 29(1):24–54CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. 49.
    Tuten TL, Bosnjak M (2001) Understanding differences in web usage: the role of need for cognition and the five factor model of personality. Soc Behav Personal Int J 29(4):391–398CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. 50.
    Verschuren A (2012) Relying on linkedin profiles for personality impressions. Master’s thesis, Tilburg University, The NetherlandsGoogle Scholar
  51. 51.
    Wald R, Khoshgoftaar T, Sumner C (2012) Machine prediction of personality from facebook profiles. In: Proceedings of the 13th international conference on information reuse and integration (IRI). IEEE, pp 109–115Google Scholar
  52. 52.
    Yarkoni T (2010) Personality in 100,000 words: a large-scale analysis of personality and word use among bloggers. J Res Pers 44(3):363–373CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shally Bhardwaj
    • 1
  • Pradeep K. Atrey
    • 2
  • Mukesh K. Saini
    • 3
  • Abdulmotaleb El Saddik
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Electrical Engineering and Computer ScienceUniversity of OttawaOttawa, OntarioCanada
  2. 2.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity at Albany - State University of New YorkAlbanyUSA
  3. 3.Division of EngineeringNew York UniversityAbu DhabiUnited Arab Emirates

Personalised recommendations