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Vocapedia > Feelings, Emotions > Happy, optimistic, cheerful, upbeat, pride, grit, hope, joy

 

 

 

http://cdn2.sbnation.com/imported_assets/382470/happy-face_happyface_smiley_2400x2400.jpg

http://www.brightsideofthesun.com/2010/2/18/1316556/snap-poll-amare-staying-put-happy

added 5 October 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Olimpia Zagn

 

Don’t Worry, Get Botox

SundayReview        NYT        MARCH 21, 2014

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/23/opinion/sunday/dont-worry-get-botox.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

Andy Singer

Inner happiness

Politicalcartoons.com

Cagle

19 July 2010

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

empathy        USA

 

https://www.npr.org/2019/01/01/
681208503/homelessness-strains-compassion-for-some-los-angeles-residents

 

http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2016/02/20/
467263025/they-brought-cookies-for-a-new-widow-empathy-eases-death-s-pain

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

compassion        USA

 

https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/02/13/
693136117/when-teens-threaten-violence-a-community-responds-with-compassion

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

kindness        USA

 

https://www.npr.org/2019/07/05/
731346268/kindness-vs-cruelty-helping-kids-hear-the-better-angels-of-their-nature

 

https://www.npr.org/2019/05/09/
721721668/kindness-can-be-taught-heres-how

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

love        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/30/
opinion/sunday/i-love-la.html

 

 

 

 

smile

 

 

 

 

smile        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2012/oct/14/
status-people-return-smiles-research

 

 

 

 

radiant smile        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2012/jun/03/
queen-elizabeth-silly-hats-rain

 

 

 

 

grin

 

 

 

 

grin        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/16/us/
16loughner.html

 

 

 

 

bristle        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/17/us/
17feinberg.html

 

 

 

 

laugh

 

 

 

 

laughter

 

 

 

 

fun

 

 

 

 

tomfoolery        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/gallery/2012/aug/06/
usain-lightning-bolt-joker-pictures

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

moving        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2013/apr/12/
margaret-thatcher-death-legacy

 

 

 

 

be dizzy with excitement        UK

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/mar/21/
kate-bush-changed-my-life

 

 

 

 

excitement        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/02/us/
politics/02grant.html

 

 

 

 

excited

 

 

 

 

buoyant mood

 

 

 

 

optimism        USA

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/14/
opinion/sunday/the-optimism-of-barack-obama.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/15/
opinion/sunday/when-did-optimism-become-uncool.html

 

 

 

 

optimism        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/apr/26/
optimism-appealing-pessimism-more-my-thing

 

 

 

 

optimistic        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2011/nov/06/
roger-ebert-cancer-life-cinema

 

 

 

 

optimist        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/24/
sports/baseball/ernie-banks-the-eternally-hopeful-mr-cub-dies-at-83.html

 

 

 

 

sunny disposition        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/24/
sports/baseball/ernie-banks-the-eternally-hopeful-mr-cub-dies-at-83.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

undaunted        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/21/us/
politics/young-opponents-of-gay-marriage-remain-undaunted.html

 

 

 

 

upbeat        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/theguardian/2011/jul/02/
david-frost-interview-frost-nixon

 

 

 

 

upbeat        USA

http://www.npr.org/sections/alltechconsidered/2017/04/12/
523533985/with-trumps-border-plans-security-and-surveillance-firms-eye-bigger-profits

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/12/
arts/susan-jeffers-psychologist-and-self-help-author-dies-at-74.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/02/
business/02auto.html

 

 

 

 

feel upbeat

 

 

 

 

uplifting

 

 

 

 

feel better

 

 

 

 

grit        UK

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/may/26/
grit-changing-resilience-courage

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2016/may/07/
is-grit-the-true-secret-of-success

 

 

 

 

grit        USA

http://www.npr.org/sections/ed/2016/05/25/
479172868/angela-duckworth-responds-to-a-new-critique-of-grit

 

 

 

 

resilience        USA

http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2015/08/14/
431413537/katrinas-emotional-legacy-includes-pain-grief-and-resilience

 

 

 

 

positive thinking

Barbara Ehrenreich explores

the darker side of positive thinking.

http://www.wimp.com/positivethinking/

 

 

 

 

fighting spirit        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/25/
opinion/25sloan.html

 

 

 

 

cope with N

http://www.theguardian.com/film/2014/jan/31/
kristin-scott-thomas-interview

 

 

 

 

proud        USA

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/01/
opinion/sunday/black-and-proud-even-if-strangers-cant-tell.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/31/
technology/timothy-cook-apples-chief-executive-says-he-is-proud-to-be-gay.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/06/
business/roy-brown-jr-edsel-designer-dies-at-96.html

 

 

 

 

pride        USA

http://www.npr.org/2017/02/06/
512190807/pig-farming-in-iowa-means-dirt-under-your-fingernails-and-a-strong-sense-of-prid

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/06/13/nyregion/
at-stonewall-inn-a-gay-rights-landmark-a-vigil-in-pride-and-anger.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/06/
business/roy-brown-jr-edsel-designer-dies-at-96.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

hope        USA

http://www.npr.org/2017/02/04/
513323521/military-widows-find-hope-and-understanding-together

http://www.npr.org/2017/01/06/
508546111/michelle-obamas-emotional-farewell-the-power-of-hope-has-allowed-us-to-rise

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/15/us/
texas-detention-center-takes-toll-on-immigrants-languishing-there.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/06/
opinion/hope-and-anger-at-the-garner-protests.html

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/21/us/in-ferguson-
anger-hurt-and-moments-of-hope.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/25/nyregion/coney-island-
opens-despite-setbacks.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/07/
opinion/friedman-hope-and-change-part-two.html

 

 

 

 

hope        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2011/oct/18/
coalition-cuts-consett-country-durham

 

 

 

 

faint hope        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/29/nyregion/
horrors-of-newtown-shooting-scene-are-slow-to-fade.html

 

 

 

 

a glimmer of hope

 

 

 

 

hope        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/2013/jun/26/
laura-robson-duque-marino-wimbledon

 

 

 

 

hopeful        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/17/science/
the-new-optimism-of-al-gore.html

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/24/sports/baseball/
ernie-banks-the-eternally-hopeful-mr-cub-dies-at-83.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ecstatic        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2009/mar/19/
sean-hodgson-miscarriage-justice-ruling

 

 

 

 

thrills        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/25/nyregion/
coney-island-opens-despite-setbacks.html

 

 

 

 

be thrilled

 

 

 

 

be over the moon

 

 

 

 

exhilarating        UK

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/sep/21/
scotland-referendum-not-a-victory-westminster-cameron-miliband-clegg

 

 

 

 

exhilarating        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/28/opinion/
blow-history-in-real-times.html

 

 

 

 

beaming

 

 

 

 

elation        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2013/feb/10/
scientists-emotions-highs-lows

 

 

 

 

elated        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/02/us/
after-charges-in-freddie-gray-case-baltimores-mood-
shifts-from-grim-to-elated.html

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/13/
arts/music/13levi.html

 

 

 

 

ebullient        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2009/may/23/
interview-desmond-tutu

 

 

 

 

effusive

 

 

 

 

personal wellbeing / life satisfaction        UK

http://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2013/oct/23/
britons-more-happy-wellbeing-anxiety

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lorraine Sorlet

 

 

The Power of Positive People

Are your friendships giving you a boost or bringing you down?

NYT        July 10, 2018

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/10/
well/the-power-of-positive-people.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Philip Seymour Hoffman on Happiness        Blank on Blank        PBS Digital Studios

 

 

 

 

Philip Seymour Hoffman on Happiness | Blank on Blank | PBS Digital Studios

 

"Learning how to die is therefore learning how to live"

- Philip Seymour Hoffman

 

Conversation with Simon Critchley

recorded live at the Rubin Museum of Art on Dec 22, 2012

 

YouTube > PBS > Blank on Blank        3 June 2014

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Osn8rjkPyYM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

happy        UK

http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/may/10/
what-would-you-pay-to-be-happy

 

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/nov/03/
ten-easy-steps-that-will-make-you-a-happier-person

 

http://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2013/oct/23/
britons-more-happy-wellbeing-anxiety

 

 

 

 

happy        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/06/
books/review/how-to-be-happy.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2012/12/23/
why-arent-people-happier-during-the-holidays

 

 

 

 

as happy as larry

 

 

 

 

happiness        UK

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/nov/27/
happiness-study-uk-life-satisfaction

http://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2013/oct/23/
britons-more-happy-wellbeing-anxiety

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/may/31/
secret-happiness-complicated-research
 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/jun/14/
uk-happy-index-developed-world

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/joepublic/2011/apr/12/
let-the-happiness-in-action-for-happiness

 

 

 

 

happiness        USA

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/21/
opinion/happiness-inequality-prosperity-.html

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/10/
well/the-power-of-positive-people.html

 

http://www.npr.org/2017/08/06/
539598381/happiness-explores-the-complex-push-and-pull-of-human-relationships

http://www.npr.org/2017/05/02/
521949374/after-losing-a-spouse-finding-a-different-kind-of-happiness

 

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/07/18/
the-dangers-of-happiness/

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/01/19/
writing-your-way-to-happiness/

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/21/
health/intangible-dividend-in-an-anti-poverty-experiment-happiness.html

 

 

 

 

happiness index        UK        2012

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/jun/14/uk-
happy-index-developed-world

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

cheerful        UK

http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/may/06/
sadiq-khan-london-mayor-corbyn-labour-scotland-snp

 

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/sep/19/
5-reasons-cheerful-voted-yes-scottish-independence

 

 

 

 

cheer up

 

 

 

 

delight

 

 

 

 

much to the delight of N

 

 

 

 

fantastic

 

 

 

 

eccentric        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2008/nov/15/fashion

 

 

 

 

unflappable        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/03/us/
politics/03obama.html

 

 

 

 

relief        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/21/us/
relief-in-boston-suburb-watertown-after-night-of-terror.html

 

 

 

 

relief        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jan/19/
algeria-hostage-scottish-man-rescued

 

 

 

 

confident        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/02/
business/02auto.html

 

 

 

 

glee        USA

https://www.npr.org/2019/03/06/
700841923/david-means-defender-of-the-short-story-on-his-instructions-for-a-funeral

 

 

 

 

bliss

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

joy        UK

 

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/jan/11/
why-society-problem-being-alone

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

joy        USA

 

https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/05/05/
719780061/from-gloom-to-gratitude-8-skills-to-cultivate-joy

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/16/nyregion/
for-newtown-horror-halts-a-season-of-celebration.html

 

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/02/
us-binladen-celebration-idUSTRE7411KV20110502

 

 

 

 

weep tears of joy

 

 

 

 

joyful

 

 

 

 

overjoyed        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/19/world/africa/
19journalists.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

glad

 

 

 

 

gladness        USA

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/news/
la-et-jackson-rehearsal27-2009jun27,0,4699249.story

 

 

 

 

overwhelming        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2013/apr/10/
sir-mark-thatcher-overwhelmed-support

 

 

 

 

overwhelmed        UK

http://www.theguardian.com/music/2014/mar/28/
kate-bush-tickets-sell-out-in-under-fifteen-minutes

 

 

 

 

forgive

 

 

 

 

forgiveness        UK

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/belief/2014/apr/11/
forgiveness-something-feel-do-rwanda

 

 

 

 

forgiveness        USA

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/12/26/
on-forgiveness/

 

 

 

 

speechless        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/audio/2009/aug/27/
gcse-schools-hackney

 

 

 

 

sympathy        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/16/
opinion/16brooks.html

 

 

 

 

emotional        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2012/aug/12/
doreen-lawrence-i-got-quite-emotional

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

sanguine

 

 

 

 

upbeat

 

 

 

 

optimistic

 

 

 

 

defiant        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2012/may/27/
patti-smith-tributes

 

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/
ulster-police-chief-defiant-after-officer-killed-1641168.html

 

 

 

 

defiant        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/28/washington/
28stevens.html

 

 

 

 

buoyant

 

 

 

 

boisterous

 

 

 

 

nervy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

serendipity        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/03/
opinion/how-to-cultivate-the-art-of-serendipity.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Joy erupts on U.S. streets

with killing of bin Laden

 

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK

Mon May 2, 2011

6:33am EDT

Reuters

By JoAnne Allen

and Basil Katz

 

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) - Thousands of people poured into the streets outside the White House and in New York City early on Monday, waving U.S. flags, cheering and honking horns to celebrate al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden's death.

Almost 10 years after the September 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington that killed nearly 3,000 people, residents found joy, comfort and closure with the death of the mastermind of the plot. For many, it was a historic, long-overdue moment.

"I never figured I'd be excited about someone's death. It's been a long time coming," firefighter Michael Carroll, 27, whose firefighter father died in the September 11 attacks, said in New York. "It's finally here. ... it feels good."

At Ground Zero, site of the World Trade Center Twin Towers toppled by al Qaeda militants flying hijacked planes, thousands sang the U.S. national anthem, popped champagne, drank from beer bottles and threw rolls of toilet paper into the air. Another big crowd gathered in New York's Times Square.

"With all the gloom and doom around us, we all needed this. Evil has been ripped from the world," said Guy Madsen, 49, a salesman from Clifton, New Jersey, who drove to Lower Manhattan with his 14-year-old son.

Many in Times Square recalled the thousands of New Yorkers who perished on a clear September Tuesday almost a decade ago. Some people held pictures of loved ones who died.

In Washington, people gathering outside the White House soon after the first reports that bin Laden had been slain in Pakistan by U.S. forces and even before President Barack Obama announced the news. The boisterous crowd swelled into the thousands and chanted "USA, USA, USA."

 

'OH MY GOD'

"We had to be there to celebrate with everybody else. I'm very happy with the outcome of today's news," said Stephen Kelley, a Gulf War veteran and former U.S. Marine, who said he rushed to the White House after his wife told him the news.

College students, who were just children when the attacks took place, turned out in huge numbers, like Jennifer Raymond, 18, wrapped in a huge U.S. flag outside the White House.

"We were all in our dorm rooms and everyone's Facebook was blowing up," Raymond said. "It's like 'Oh my God, Osama bin Laden's dead.' Everyone in the dorm was screaming. Everyone decided to come to the White House."

The celebration may well have been the biggest crowd to gather spontaneously outside the White House since Obama's election in November 2008.

In New York City, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in a statement: "New Yorkers have waited nearly 10 years for this news. It is my hope that it will bring some closure and comfort to all those who lost loved ones on September 11, 2001."

Firefighters hold a special place in New Yorkers' memories of September 11, as hundreds died in the collapse of the Twin Towers while racing up flights of stairs to rescue trapped people on upper floors.

"This is a tremendous moment, and hopefully it will bring us together, it doesn't matter if you're Muslim or Christian or whatever," said Patrice McLeod, a firefighter dressed in uniform. "We'll never give up."

It was also a night to remember the 100,000 or so U.S. troops deployed in Afghanistan. Elaine Coronado, 51, whose brother served a year in Afghanistan, said that joining the crowd outside the White House was a way of showing her support to U.S. military families.

Donna Marsh O'Connor, who lost her pregnant daughter in the 2001 attacks and is active in the group September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows, watched events unfold on television.

"Osama bin Laden is dead, and so is my daughter," she told Reuters. "His death didn't bring her back. We are not a family which celebrates death, no matter who it is."

 

(Additional reporting by Zachary Goelman, Mark Egan

and Daniel Trotta in New York,

and Toby Zakaria in Washington;

writing by Mary Milliken; editing by Will Dunham)

Joy erupts on U.S. streets with killing of bin Laden,
R,
2.5.2011,
http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/02/
us-binladen-celebration-idUSTRE7411KV20110502

 

 

 

 

 

Op-Ed Columnist

The Spirit of Sympathy

 

March 16, 2010

The New York Times

By DAVID BROOKS

 

Human beings, the philosophers tell us, are social animals. We emerge into the world ready to connect with mom and dad. We go through life jibbering and jabbering with each other, grouping and regrouping. When you get a crowd of people in a room, the problem is not getting them to talk to each other; the problem is getting them to shut up.

To help us in this social world, God, nature and culture have equipped us with a spirit of sympathy. We instinctively feel a tinge of pain when we observe another in pain (at least most of us do). We instinctively mimic, even to a small extent, the mood, manners, yawns and actions of the people around us.

To help us bond and commit, we have been equipped with a suite of moral sentiments. We have an innate sense of fairness. Children from an early age have a sense that everybody should be treated fairly. We have an innate sense of duty. We admire people who sacrifice for the group. We are naturally embarrassed when we’ve been caught violating some social code. We blush uncontrollably.

As a result of this sympathy and these sentiments, people are usually pretty decent to one another when they relate person to person. The odd thing is that when people relate group to group, none of this applies. When a group or a nation thinks about another group or nation, there doesn’t seem to be much natural sympathy, natural mimicry or a natural desire for attachment. It’s as if an entirely different part of the brain has been activated, utilizing a different mode of thinking.

Group-to-group relations are more often marked by calculation, rivalry and coldness. Members of one group sometimes see members of another group as less than human: Nazi and Jew, Hutu and Tutsi, Sunni and Shiite.

Political leaders have an incentive to get their followers to use the group mode of cognition, not the person-to-person. People who are thinking in the group mode are loyal, disciplined and vicious against foes. People in the person-to-person mode are soft, unpredictable and hard to organize.

There’s a scene in Anthony Trollope’s political novel, “Phineas Finn,” in which young Phineas, about to enter Parliament, tells a party leader that he is going to think for himself and decide issues as he sees best. The leader, Barrington Erle, looks at him with utter disgust. To Erle, anybody who thinks that way is “unstable as water and dishonest as the wind.”

In the United States, leaders in the House of Representatives have done an effective job in getting their members to think in group, not person-to-person, terms. Members usually vote as party blocs. Individuals have very little power. That’s why representatives are often subtle and smart as individuals, but crude and partisan as a collective. The social psychology of the House is a clan psychology, not an interpersonal psychology.

The Senate, on the other hand, has historically been home to more person-to-person thinking. This is because the Senate is smaller and because of Senate rules. Until recently, the Senate leaders couldn’t just ram things through on party-line votes. Because a simple majority did not rule, and because one senator had the ability to bring the whole body to a halt, senators had an incentive, every day, to develop alliances and relationships with people in the other party.

For decades, individual senators have resisted their leaders’ attempts to run the Senate like the House and destroy these relationships and these humane customs. A few years ago, when Republican leaders tried to pass judicial nominations on party-line votes, rank-and-file members like Barack Obama, Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton spoke out forcefully against rule by simple majority.

But power trumps principle. In nearly every arena of political life, group relationships have replaced person-to-person relationships. The tempo of the Senate is now set by partisan lunches every Tuesday, whereas the body almost never meets for conversation as a whole. The Senate is now in the process of using reconciliation — rule by simple majority — to try to pass health care.

Reconciliation has been used periodically before. That was bad enough. But at least for major legislation like the first Bush tax cuts, there was usually significant bipartisan support. Now we have pure reconciliation mixed with pure partisanship.

Once partisan reconciliation is used for this bill, it will be used for everything, now and forever. The Senate will be the House. The remnants of person-to-person relationships, with their sympathy and sentiment, will be snuffed out. We will live amid the relationships of group versus group, party versus party, inhumanity versus inhumanity.

We have a political culture in which the word “reconciliation” has come to mean “bitter division.” With increasing effectiveness, the system bleaches out normal behavior and the normal instincts of human sympathy.

 

 

This article has been revised

to reflect the following correction:

Correction: March 17, 2010

A column by David Brooks on Tuesday

about the political maneuvering

over the health care bill stated

that the 2003 prescription drug bill

was passed in the United States Senate

by the reconciliation process.

The bill passed by simple majority

without the use of reconciliation.

    The Spirit of Sympathy, NYT, 16.3.2010,
    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/16/opinion/16brooks.html

 

 

 

 

 

Mining the Web for Feelings,

Not Facts

 

August 24, 2009

The New York Times

By ALEX WRIGHT

 

Computers may be good at crunching numbers, but can they crunch feelings?

The rise of blogs and social networks has fueled a bull market in personal opinion: reviews, ratings, recommendations and other forms of online expression. For computer scientists, this fast-growing mountain of data is opening a tantalizing window onto the collective consciousness of Internet users.

An emerging field known as sentiment analysis is taking shape around one of the computer world’s unexplored frontiers: translating the vagaries of human emotion into hard data.

This is more than just an interesting programming exercise. For many businesses, online opinion has turned into a kind of virtual currency that can make or break a product in the marketplace.

Yet many companies struggle to make sense of the caterwaul of complaints and compliments that now swirl around their products online. As sentiment analysis tools begin to take shape, they could not only help businesses improve their bottom lines, but also eventually transform the experience of searching for information online.

Several new sentiment analysis companies are trying to tap into the growing business interest in what is being said online.

“Social media used to be this cute project for 25-year-old consultants,” said Margaret Francis, vice president for product at Scout Labs in San Francisco. Now, she said, top executives “are recognizing it as an incredibly rich vein of market intelligence.”

Scout Labs, which is backed by the venture capital firm started by the CNet founder Halsey Minor, recently introduced a subscription service that allows customers to monitor blogs, news articles, online forums and social networking sites for trends in opinions about products, services or topics in the news.

In early May, the ticket marketplace StubHub used Scout Labs’ monitoring tool to identify a sudden surge of negative blog sentiment after rain delayed a Yankees-Red Sox game.

Stadium officials mistakenly told hundreds of fans that the game had been canceled, and StubHub denied fans’ requests for refunds, on the grounds that the game had actually been played. But after spotting trouble brewing online, the company offered discounts and credits to the affected fans. It is now re-evaluating its bad weather policy.

“This is a canary in a coal mine for us,” said John Whelan, StubHub’s director of customer service.

Jodange, based in Yonkers, offers a service geared toward online publishers that lets them incorporate opinion data drawn from over 450,000 sources, including mainstream news sources, blogs and Twitter.

Based on research by Claire Cardie, a former Cornell computer science professor, and Jan Wiebe of the University of Pittsburgh, the service uses a sophisticated algorithm that not only evaluates sentiments about particular topics, but also identifies the most influential opinion holders.

Jodange, whose early investors include the National Science Foundation, is currently working on a new algorithm that could use opinion data to predict future developments, like forecasting the impact of newspaper editorials on a company’s stock price.

In a similar vein, The Financial Times recently introduced Newssift, an experimental program that tracks sentiments about business topics in the news, coupled with a specialized search engine that allows users to organize their queries by topic, organization, place, person and theme.

Using Newssift, a search for Wal-Mart reveals that recent sentiment about the company is running positive by a ratio of slightly better than two to one. When that search is refined with the suggested term “Labor Force and Unions,” however, the ratio of positive to negative sentiments drops closer to one to one.

Such tools could help companies pinpoint the effect of specific issues on customer perceptions, helping them respond with appropriate marketing and public relations strategies.

For casual Web surfers, simpler incarnations of sentiment analysis are sprouting up in the form of lightweight tools like Tweetfeel, Twendz and Twitrratr. These sites allow users to take the pulse of Twitter users about particular topics.

A quick search on Tweetfeel, for example, reveals that 77 percent of recent tweeters liked the movie “Julie & Julia.” But the same search on Twitrratr reveals a few misfires. The site assigned a negative score to a tweet reading “julie and julia was truly delightful!!” That same message ended with “we all felt very hungry afterwards” — and the system took the word “hungry” to indicate a negative sentiment.

While the more advanced algorithms used by Scout Labs, Jodange and Newssift employ advanced analytics to avoid such pitfalls, none of these services works perfectly. “Our algorithm is about 70 to 80 percent accurate,” said Ms. Francis, who added that its users can reclassify inaccurate results so the system learns from its mistakes.

Translating the slippery stuff of human language into binary values will always be an imperfect science, however. “Sentiments are very different from conventional facts,” said Seth Grimes, the founder of the suburban Maryland consulting firm Alta Plana, who points to the many cultural factors and linguistic nuances that make it difficult to turn a string of written text into a simple pro or con sentiment. “ ‘Sinful’ is a good thing when applied to chocolate cake,” he said.

The simplest algorithms work by scanning keywords to categorize a statement as positive or negative, based on a simple binary analysis (“love” is good, “hate” is bad). But that approach fails to capture the subtleties that bring human language to life: irony, sarcasm, slang and other idiomatic expressions. Reliable sentiment analysis requires parsing many linguistic shades of gray.

“We are dealing with sentiment that can be expressed in subtle ways,” said Bo Pang, a researcher at Yahoo who co-wrote “Opinion Mining and Sentiment Analysis,” one of the first academic books on sentiment analysis.

To get at the true intent of a statement, Ms. Pang developed software that looks at several different filters, including polarity (is the statement positive or negative?), intensity (what is the degree of emotion being expressed?) and subjectivity (how partial or impartial is the source?).

For example, a preponderance of adjectives often signals a high degree of subjectivity, while noun- and verb-heavy statements tend toward a more neutral point of view.

As sentiment analysis algorithms grow more sophisticated, they should begin to yield more accurate results that may eventually point the way to more sophisticated filtering mechanisms. They could become a part of everyday Web use.

“I see sentiment analysis becoming a standard feature of search engines,” said Mr. Grimes, who suggests that such algorithms could begin to influence both general-purpose Web searching and more specialized searches in areas like e-commerce, travel reservations and movie reviews.

Ms. Pang envisions a search engine that fine-tunes results for users based on sentiment. For example, it might influence the ordering of search results for certain kinds of queries like “best hotel in San Antonio.”

As search engines begin to incorporate more and more opinion data into their results, the distinction between fact and opinion may start blurring to the point where, as David Byrne once put it, “facts all come with points of view.”

Mining the Web for Feelings, Not Facts,
NYT,
24.8.2009,
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/24/
technology/internet/24emotion.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Related > Anglonautes > Vocapedia

 

mental health > empathy, empaths

 

feelings, emotions