Facebook’s Coming Out Study
This graph also shows periods in which there are sharp increases in the number of people coming out on Facebook. The most obvious increase is seen following the aftermath of the Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, indicated by the red vertical line. On a typical day, one out of every ten people who change their “interested in” status on Facebook do so to reflect a same-gender interest. On the day of the Supreme Court ruling, this ratio was double, one out of every five people. Additionally, in the days following the June 26 Supreme Court decision, we saw more than 26 million people display a rainbow filter on their profile picture.
There are two Big Data companies out there, with access to more data about people than anyone else: Google and Facebook. Google infers quite a lot based on browsing traffic.1 Facebook relies on what people tell them- but that’s still a lot of information.
- The amount of stuff they’re collecting, actually, is one of the reasons I use locally-hosted analytics software rather than Google Analytics. ↩