Well, that will actually allow them to diagnose you better.
The photos we post to social media reveal more about our current state of mind than we realize, say researchers say in a new study. 71 of of the people who took part had a clinical diagnosis of depression.
"In other words, people suffering from depression were more likely to favour a filter that literally drained all the colour out of the images they wanted to share", the scientists continued.
In their paper published in the journal EPJ Data Science, Danforth and Reece report the algorithm, using clinically verified insights from psychological practice, correctly identified the participants with a history of depression in 70% of cases.
And it was so successful that they were able to develop a program that can diagnose depression with 70% accuracy, compared to an average of 42% correct unassisted diagnosis by Global Positioning System. Those experiencing some sort of depression tended to opt for darker colors in their Instagram photos, whereas those who weren't gravitated toward more vivid colors. And artificial intelligence may be particularly good at picking up on those clues. Healthy individuals used the filter Valencia most often, while depressed individuals used Inkwell, which is much darker.
Although the team were also quick to say that the study only provides a limited diagnosis of depression, classifying it as a single-faceted condition, without consideration of other health conditions that may be present too. The volunteers provided the researchers with information about past diagnoses of depression and responded to a questionnaire created to assess a person's level of depression. The researchers found that depressed people were more likely than healthy people to post a photo with people's faces, but these photos had fewer faces on average than the healthy people's Instagram feeds.
Depression is strongly associated with reduced social activity [20, 21]. "People diagnosed with depression also posted at a higher frequency compared to non-depressed individuals". A company called NeuroLex Diagnostics is working on a series of AI tools that can identify telltale patterns and tics in speech to diagnose problems including depression, schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, and Parkinson's.
The scientists now believe that their computer system could be used my medical staff to produce algorithm-triggered alerts to indicate where a person may be at risk of mental illness. For example, the researchers said that they used a broad definition of depression, and looking at specific types of depression could lead to different results.