Journal Notes Concern on Facebook Study It Published

July 7, 2014

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, which published a controversial study on attempts to manipulate the emotions of Facebook users, on Thursday expressed concern about whether Facebook users who were studied had been treated fairly. In an editorial, the journal said that Facebook, as a private company, is not required by law to follow the same informed consent procedures as a university would. But the editorial said that informed consent is an important principle, even when not required by law. The editorial called it "a matter of concern that the collection of the data by Facebook may have involved practices that were not fully consistent with the principles of obtaining informed consent and allowing participants to opt out."

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