Left Menu
Development News Edition

Know anyone that often tweets images in grayscale? They might need your help

Devdiscourse News Desk | Washington DC | Updated: 16-05-2019 14:30 IST | Created: 16-05-2019 14:14 IST
Know anyone that often tweets images in grayscale? They might need your help
Researchers found that these users tend to suppress positive emotions rather than outwardly display more negative emotions, such as keeping a straight face instead of outright frowning. Image Credit: Pixabay

Twitter users with depression and anxiety tend to post pictures with lower aesthetic values and less vivid colours, particularly images in grayscale, recent findings suggest. As part of a recent study, researchers found that these users tend to suppress positive emotions rather than outwardly display more negative emotions, such as keeping a straight face instead of outright frowning, in their profile pictures.

The study sought to utilise computer vision and artificial intelligence to determine what qualities of photos posted to and set as profile images on Twitter could be associated with depression and anxiety, with an eye toward using the platform as a method of screening for both. In 2018, Penn Medicine researchers found that depression could be predicted as many as three months before diagnosis by using artificial intelligence to identify keywords that flagged certain users.

As social media is becoming increasingly image-focused--more than half of all tweets, 3,000-plus of them per second, now contain an image--the value in gaining clues on health conditions through image content will become increasingly valuable to medicine. "While the association between depression and language-use patterns is well-studied, the visual aspects of depression has not been. It is challenging to transform pixels that form the images to interpretable features, but with the advances in computer vision algorithms, we are now attempting to uncover another dimension of the condition as it manifests online," said Sharath Guntuku, PhD, a research scientist with Penn Medicine's Center for Digital Health and lead author of the study.

The research used algorithms to extract features such as colours, facial expressions, and different aesthetic measures (such as depth of field, symmetry, and lighting) from images posted by more than 4,000 Twitter users who consented to be a part of the study. To quickly categorise their depression and anxiety scores, they analysed each person's last 3,200 tweets. Meanwhile, 887 users also completed a traditional survey to obtain depression and anxiety scores. Then, image features were correlated with users' depression and anxiety scores. From this, several significant relationships emerged.

In addition to finding an association between depression and anxiety and those who posted less vivid photos, the researchers also discovered that profile images of anxious users are marked by grayscale and low aesthetic cohesion, but less so than those of depressed users. There was also something to be interpreted in what was not included in photos. Depressed users often posted photos only of their own faces with no family, friends, or other people appearing in them. Additionally, the posts rarely included recreational activities or interests, which more often showed up in photos of non-depressed users.


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

Rethinking Rural Livelihoods in the Times of COVID-19

The reverse migration caused by COVID 19 pandemic has put an additional burden of about one crore people on Indian villages particularly in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Bengal and Odisha. Besides increasing the risk of spreading the ...

‘Discounted Deaths’ and COVID 19: Anthropology of Death and Emotions

Death is a social event rather than the mere cessation of biological functions. As seen by anthropologists, death is not just physical but intensely social, cultural, and political....

Indigenous knowledge of communities a must for maximizing impact of community work

Generally, it has been observed that the majority of the academicians in higher education institutions neglect the wisdom of community people and throw their weight around thinking that they know everything and the community knows nothing. ...

In rebuking FBR, Pakistan’s courts take a stand for public health

The system, if implemented effectively, will allow Pakistans revenue service to combat the illicit trade in tobacco products and potentially add hundreds of millions of dollars to the states budget each year. ...

Videos

Latest News

U.S. protests point to long-standing racial inequalities - UN rights boss

Protests in U.S. cities triggered by the killing of George Floyd underscore police violence against people of colour, and historic inequalities in access to health, education and jobs, the top United Nations human rights official said on Tu...

SPECIAL REPORT-U.S. school closures dramatically shrinking public education, Reuters finds

Jennifer Panditaratnes third-grade daughter had been seeing a reading specialist once a week before her Florida school closed abruptly in March due to the novel coronavirus. Since then, her child has had no contact with the specialist. Pand...

Trump’s move to invite India, Russia, Australia, S Korea to attend G-7 summit riles China

China on Tuesday angrily reacted to US President Donald Trumps plans to invite India, Russia, Australia and South Korea to G7 summit, saying that any attempts to draw a small circle against Beijing will be doomed to fail and become unpopula...

Bangladesh records first COVID-19 death in Rohingya refugee camp

Bangladesh has confirmed its first coronavirus death among the Rohingya refugees on Tuesday, amid growing concern from the international rights groups on the high transmission rate in the packed camps which house over a million displaced pe...

Give Feedback