On Facebook, the more apps you add 'the more popular you are'

London, Oct 12 (ANI): An Oxford University-led research has found that users calculate their popularity quotient based on how many Facebook applications they add onto their profile.

The researchers found people display a herding instinct, making them want to use the same product as others - but only once it has reached a certain level of popularity.

"Users only appear to be influenced by the choices of other users above a certain level of popularity, and at that point, popularity drives future popularity. Below this threshold, the effects of social influence are imperceptible," The Scotsman quoted Dr Felix Reed-Tsochas from Oxford University's Institute for Science, Innovation and Society, as saying.

When the research was carried out, Facebook published a list of the most popular apps on its website, and also notified people when their friends downloaded a new one.

In the two-month study, carried out in 2007, the researchers tracked 100 million installations of apps. They found that the popularity of an app soared after it reached a rate of 55 applications a day.

Researchers are now considering if the study could have wider implications, suggesting for example that reviews of books on online retailers' websites could affect customers' purchases.

The study is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal today. (ANI)

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