What are Facebook users thankful for?


As people all over the United States prepare to break bread and give thanks today, Facebook’s Data Science team wondered: What are people thankful for?

The usual answers — friends, family, health — top the list, but employment, children and shelter also made the top ten list.

Facebook’s Data Science team discussed the study:

We started by collecting a set of anonymized English status updates that contained “grateful” or “thankful,” as well as the word “day” preceded or followed by a number. These status updates were then aggregated and processed by a text-clustering algorithm so we could identify what people were grateful for.

One of the first things we discovered is that the people who participated in this challenge were overwhelmingly women: 90% of people who participated identified as female on their profile. There are a number of explanations for why this might be: women may be more likely to participate in challenges such as this; women may be more likely to nominate other women than men; women may be more willing to share what they are grateful for on Facebook; etc. To be clear, we think it is unlikely that women are actually more grateful than men.


Since the challenge was mainly answered by women, Facebook also included a chart showing the topics men on Facebook were most thankful for.


Facebook also broke down thankful topics by state.

California? Thankful for YouTube. Those in the Southwest are grateful for the rain, while Hawaiians and residents of Louisiana are giving thanks for rainbows.

1383133_10152867552048415_4093141570771670460_nThe entire post, which contains even more interesting data, can be found here.

Top image courtesy of Shutterstock.


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