How Courtship Begins and Ends, as Observed by Facebook Data

Facebook Data Science published a blog post examining  the timeline posts that are exchanged between two people who changed their status from “Single” to “In a relationship”. The team presented statistical data, revealing a dramatic decrease in wall posts when the relationship begins. The data is shown on the picture below.


Basing the Facebook couple user’s anniversary date as declared by the users (between April 2010 and October 2013), Facebook Data Science noted a gradual increase in the number of timeline posts shared between the couple 100 days before the relationship begins; with posts beginning to decrease when the the relationship begins.

Presumably, couples decide to spend more time together, courtship is off, and online interactions give way to more interactions in the physical world.

On the other hand, the team found out that interactions between timeline posts got more positive from once a user’s status changes to “In a Relationship”. Words like “love”, “nice” “happy”, among others have become prominent, as compared to negative words like “hate”, “hurt”, “bad”, etc… The graph below shows the proportion of the association of positive words over the negative ones before and after a relationship starts.


The data above is based on a collective and random sample worldwide. However, the second date presented is focused on English-speaking users.