The more someone uses Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), the less he is satisfied with his life, says a recent study released by the Public Library of Science, and conducted by Ethan Kross of the University of Michigan and Philippe Verduyn of Leuven University in Belgium.
About the study
There have been many studies conducted in the past that concluded using Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is linked with jealousy, social tension, isolation and depression. However, these studies have taken a small view of a broad issue, meaning their findings were based on a very short span of time. Kross and Verduyn’s study may be the first in which researchers observed Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) users for a relatively longer period to gain insight of their emotional changes.
A total of 82 Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) users were hired for the research. The subjects were all in their late teens or early 20s, and the researchers kept an eye on their Facebook activity for two weeks. Subjects were asked to report, five times a day, about their state of mind and their direct social contact (phone calls and meetings in person with other people).
Findings of the study
In the report, it was observed that subjects who used Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) more between filling out the two questionnaires felt worse. Further, volunteers were also asked to give ratings on their satisfaction with life at the start and end of the study. The research found a positive correlation between the amount of direct social contact a volunteer had and how positive he felt. Those who were in direct social relations, in the real world, were much more satisfied than the others.
Sex of the volunteer, the size of his/her social network, stated motivation for using Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), level of loneliness or depression or self-esteem did not in any way affected the conclusions drawn by the study.
Earlier study on Facebook also had similar findings
Earlier, social scientists at Humboldt University Berlin and Darmstadt’s Technical University, both in Germany, mentioned that the most common feeling that Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) excites in a human being is envy, and that socializing on Facebook is different from socializing in person. The research was conducted on 584 Facebook users in their 20s.
However, none of the studies gave any information on whether these findings are only relevant to younger users of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) or others as well.