Could Facebook be making you miserable?
by zachlukas on September 11, 2013 - 6:27pm
Could be facebook causing more harm than good?
The article "Could Facebook be making you miserable" focuses on the negative aspects that lies behind the wonders of social connectivity. The University of Michigan conducted a study to see how people are affected by their social network. A sample of 82 subjects were chosen for the experiment, comprising of 29 men and 53 females. The participants were initially asked to fill out a questionnaire regarding how satisfied they were with their lives and again at the end of the study. The study lasted a total of 14 days and each day, the participants were sent text messages containing links to surveys which asked questions like "How do you feel right now?", "How worried are you right now?", "How lonely do you feel right now?", "How much have you used Facebook since the last time we asked?" and "How much "direct" contact have you had with people since we last asked?" After reviewing the results of their study, they inferred that "On the surface, Facebook provides an invaluable resource for fulfilling the basic human need for social connection. But rather than enhance well-being, we found that Facebook use predicts the opposite result - in undermines it." Although these inferences were made, it is not concluded that people use social networks more when they feel bad, which goes against their initial predictions. The researchers added "Facebook use predicts declines in affective well-being. it is possible that interacting with other people directly either enhances the frequency of such comparisons or magnifies their emotional impact."
I really enjoyed this article because it brought up many points that I overlooked and realized could relate to myself. It was a very interesting expriement that they conducted because they focused on an important social networking tool which is used my most and can affect them. The experiment could have been more valid by using an equal amount of male and female participants and by conducting the experiment longer. They used a 2 week span to research this which is somewhat short for this kind of experiment.