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March 17, 2014 / carlispina

Search for and Rate GIFs by Emotion Using GIFGIF

GIFGIF LogoGIFGIF is an interesting new project by Travis Rich and Kevin Hu of the MIT Media Lab. Rich and Hu are interested in gathering information about the emotional impact of GIFs, but rather than simply conducting a study with some volunteers, they built GIFGIF, a site that uses GIFs retrieved using the Giphy API to not only let you vote on which GIFs best convey specific emotions, but also let you search for GIFs based on their emotional impact.

ScreenshotWhen you first go to GIFGIF, you are presented with two GIFs and a question about which of those GIFs better expresses a specified emotion. You can either click on one of the two GIFs or click on neither if you don’t believe either of the GIFs conveys that emotion. Underneath the GIFs you can see information on the current results for that emotion as well as the number of times you have voted and which achievements you have unlocked. The data collected from these votes are what Rich and Hu are using to answer their questions about the emotional variance of GIFs and whether the impact of a GIF is at least partially cultural. The voting process is easy and if you don’t want to answer a particular question, there is an option to reload until you get one that you prefer.

Search ScreenshotBut, GIFGIF’s most useful feature is the ability to search through the 6,056 GIFs that are included on the site. To allow users to focus on the emotion of the GIF they are looking for, Rich and Hu have created a search mechanism that allows you to search along three, four or five emotional parameters. As shown in the screenshot above, each emotion is a point on a polygon and you can drag a dot along an axis to show how much of that emotion you want the GIF results to include. Once you have set the emotions, you can click on the polygon to get 18 GIFs that meet your needs, complete with information about how well each one fits your parameters. Using the results page, you can also browse through the GIFs by emotion to see how they have ranked. Clicking on any GIF will take you to a page with a link to its source, icons for sharing it on social media, and data about the voting for that GIF. Whether you are want to contribute to Rich and Hu’s findings, are just looking for the perfect GIF, or enjoy finding out how others have reacted to GIFs, this website is a fun tool for all your GIF-related needs.


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