TED-Focused Study Finds That YouTube Commenters Are Different From Those Who Comment Directly on Websites

Tara Long, Dnews’ newest host reports on a study that analyzed comments made on the TED.com website and those made on TED’s YouTube channel and compared the comments garnered from each media platform.

A study published in PLOS One this week, conducted an extensive analysis of TED Talks, to see if comments on the YouTube version of them differed from comments on the TED Talks website. Now if you’re unfamiliar with TED talks, they are a collection of recorded conferences covering every intellectual topic imaginable – but always with a very inspiring slant. And they’re super informative, so one might expect the comments on them to be on-topic or, dare we say, even positive. But once again, science has proven us wrong. For their study, a team of researchers looked at 595 different TED talks relating to science and technology, which currently account for around two-thirds of all TED talks. And they looked at the comments on each video, comparing those on the YouTube platform, to ones on the Ted.com version. They found that 72% of the comments on the Ted.com videos were related to the actual content of the talk – while only 57% of comments on the YouTube version were relevant. Even less surprising, 5.7% of the comments on YouTube were personal insults, compared to less than 1% on Ted.com.