They Did A Study To See How Women Are Treated In Comments. The Results Will Shock You. Except Not.

Adam Mordecai

Comments on the Internets can be treacherous. For women, it's a little worse. At 1:30, she explains the difference in the comments that men get versus women. It's not a surprise, at all. Seriously. At all.

Science proves that YouTube commenters are just the worst. They said it, not me!

0:11

Hey guys, Tara here for Dnews - with DEFINITIVE PROOF that YouTube trolls exist, science has

0:15

proven it, officially - and it is out of my hands!

0:19

A study published in PLOS One this week, conducted an extensive analysis of TED Talks, to see

0:24

if comments on the YouTube version of them differed from comments on the TED Talks website.

0:29

Now if you're unfamiliar with TED talks, they are a collection of recorded conferences covering

0:33

every intellectual topic imaginable - but always with a very inspiring slant. And they're

0:38

super informative, so one might expect the comments on them to be on-topic or, dare we

0:43

say, even positive. But once again, science has proven us wrong.

0:47

For their study, a team of researchers looked at 595 different TED talks relating to science

0:53

and technology, which currently account for around two-thirds of all TED talks. And they

0:56

looked at the comments on each video, comparing those on the YouTube platform, to ones on

1:01

the Ted.com version.

1:02

They found that 72% of the comments on the Ted.com videos were related to the actual

1:07

content of the talk - while only 57% of comments on the YouTube version were relevant. Even

1:12

less surprising, 5.7% of the comments on YouTube were personal insults, compared to less than

1:18

1% on Ted.com.

1:20

The study also looked at the disparity of comments on talks featuring female presenters,

1:24

versus ones featuring males. And while there were no differences in the number of negative

1:29

or positive comments related to the actual subject matter - female presenters did tend

1:32

to elicit more emotional responses than males, whether positive and negative.

1:37

Perhaps most interesting, the study found that commenters were significantly more likely

1:41

to discuss a female presenter's looks - than they were for a male-hosted talk. SAY IT ISN'T

1:46

SO, YOUTUBE!

1:48

In fact, the only advantage YouTube had over Ted.com was that people were more likely

1:53

to engage with one another in the comments. And it's not clear whether personal insults

1:57

actually count as "engagement," but at this point - nothing would surprise me.

2:00

Now I thought this study was very interesting, so I did some research myself - and looked

2:04

at all 984 comments on this YouTube video about the science of flirting - a topic that's

2:09

sure to attract only the nicest and most socially capable of individuals.

2:14

Turns out - it's scientifically impossible to read through 984 comments on a YouTube

2:19

video - it just can't be done. So my study was inconclusive, BUT on the bright side - several

2:24

people did say that I look like a man, soooo......there's that.

2:28

You know what, I'm gonna start an anti-trolling movement. The next time you leave a comment

2:33

on YouTube, I want you to write the kindest, most overwhelmingly positive thing you can

2:37

think of. Even if it's not true. And you can start with this video. Please. I really need

2:41

this.

There may be small errors in this transcript.

Next bit of Upworthiness:

Flash Video Embed

This video is not supported by your device. Continue browsing to find other stuff you'll love!

Hi there, internet friend. We need to talk. You're using a painfully old web browser, and frankly, it's getting a little weird. It's not safe, and we want the best for you. We think it's time to upgrade.

Download Google Chrome, and try it for a week. Don't think about it, just do it. You'll thank us later.