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Facebook Boosts Self-Esteem


Facebook Boosts Self-Esteem

(epharmanews)- A new study conducted by researchers from the University of Georgia suggests that social networks often make people feel better and enhance their self-esteem.

In this study, published online this month by the journal Computers in Human Behavior, researchers studied the effects social networks have on self-esteem and narcissism. The study involved 151 college students, ages 18 to 22, who were asked to either edit their social networking page on MySpace or Facebook or to use Google Maps. While student who spent time on their Facebook page scored higher on self-esteem, students who edited their MySpace page later scored higher on a measure of narcissism.

Editing yourself and constructing yourself on these social networking sites, even for a short period of time, seems to have an effect on how you see yourself," said Campbell, who heads the department of psychology in the UGA Franklin College of Arts and Sciences and co-authored the book "The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement." "They are feeling better about themselves in both cases. But in one they are tapping into narcissism and in the other into self-esteem."

"Despite the name ‘social networks,' much user activity on networking sites is self-focused," said Brittany Gentile, a UGA doctoral candidate who looked at the effects of social networks on self-esteem and narcissism.

The differences in site format may be one reason why MySpace led to higher narcissism whereas Facebook merely produced higher self-esteem.

"The two sites operate differently," Gentile said. "On MySpace you don't really interact with other people. The pages resemble personal webpages, and a lot of people have become famous on MySpace, whereas Facebook has a standard profile and a company message that sharing will improve the world."

Earlier studies found increases in both self-esteem and narcissism over the generations. These new experiments suggest the increasing popularity of social networking sites may play a role in those trends.

"Social networking sites are a product and a cause of a society that is self-absorbed," Campbell said. "Narcissism and self-esteem began to rise in the 1980s. Because Facebook came on the scene only seven years ago, it wasn't the original cause of the increases. It may be just another enforcer."

Social networking should not be seen as an answer to building self-esteem, he said, but the fact that people may get a jolt when logging on doesn't mean they should stop either.

"Ideally, you get self-esteem from having strong relationships and achieving goals that are reasonable and age-appropriate," Campbell said. "Ideally, self-esteem is not something you should take a short cut to find. It is a consequence of a good life, not something you chase.


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Prepared by: Marcell Shehwaro


Source :

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