Study finds ‘likes’ have persuasive power

Up-votes seem to have more influence on other readers than down-votes, according to a new article in the journal Science.

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A new study in the journal Science offers some hope that the Web isn’t a place fueled by negativity, though. In fact, it’s positive feedback that does the most to persuade other users.

According to the report, “liking” an article will almost certainly encourage friends to “like” it as well, even if it’s not all that good. Unfairly criticizing an article won’t have the same effect.

Researchers from The New York Times research and development laboratory, New York University, and Hebrew University in Jerusalem worked with a Reddit-like, unnamed website that enables users to vote articles and comments up or down. Some comments were given random up or down votes to see what the impact would be.

The New York Times reports the results:

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