Click me…! : The influence of clickbait on user engagement in social media and the role of digital nudging

Clickbait to make people click on a linked article is commonly used on social media. We analyze the impact of clickbait on user interaction on Facebook in the form of liking, sharing and commenting. For this, we use a data set of more than 4,400 Facebook posts from 10 different news sources to analyze how clickbait in post headlines and in post text influences user engagement. The results of our study revealed that certain features (e.g., unusual punctuation and common clickbait phrases) increase user interaction, whereas others decrease engagement with Facebook posts. We further use our results to discuss the potential role of digital nudging in the context of clickbait. Our results contribute to understanding and making use of the effect of different framings in social media.


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