Social and Linguistic Behavior and its Correlation to Trait Empathy


A growing body of research exploits social media behaviors to gauge psychological character- istics, though trait empathy has received little attention. Because of its intimate link to the abil- ity to relate to others, our research aims to predict participants’ levels of empathy, given their textual and friending behaviors on Facebook. Using Poisson regression, we compared the vari- ance explained in Davis’ Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI) scores on four constructs (em- pathic concern, personal distress, fantasy, perspective taking), by two classes of variables: 1) post content and 2) linguistic style. Our study lays the groundwork for a greater understanding of empathy’s role in facilitating interactions on social media

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