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DOI: 10.1145/3604915.3608856

Ex2Vec: Characterizing Users and Items from the Mere Exposure Effect

Bruno SguerraViet-Anh TranRomain Hennequin
Nov 2023
The traditional recommendation framework seeks to connect user and content, by finding the best match possible based on users past interaction. However, a good content recommendation is not necessarily similar to what the user has chosen in the past. As humans, users naturally evolve, learn, forget, get bored, they change their perspective of the world and in consequence, of the recommendable content. One well known mechanism that affects user interest is the Mere Exposure Effect: when repeatedly exposed to stimuli, users' interest tends to rise with the initial exposures, reaching a peak, and gradually decreasing thereafter, resulting in an inverted-U shape. Since previous research has shown that the magnitude of the effect depends on a number of interesting factors such as stimulus complexity and familiarity, leveraging this effect is a way to not only improve repeated recommendation but to gain a more in-depth understanding of both users and stimuli. In this work we present (Mere) Exposure2Vec (Ex2Vec) our model that leverages the Mere Exposure Effect in repeat consumption to derive user and item characterization and track user interest evolution. We validate our model through predicting future music consumption based on repetition and discuss its implications for recommendation scenarios where repetition is common.
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