Asocial Media

fb-thumbs-down

A study reported in the latest issue of The Economist magazine found that using Facebook made people more miserable.  The study was small (n = 82) and limited to volunteers in their late teens and early 20’s.  Still, it’s consistent with a larger study finding the most common emotion aroused by Facebook use is envy.

That’s not true for my use, of course, since all of my close  kin and acquaintances are more attractive and adorable than my Facebook friends’, and all my travels are more interesting and exotic.  And, of course, our place in Emilia Romagna – what can I say?  The pictures, though spectacular, just can’t do it justice.

One FB practice that may drive inevitable envy is posting pictures of meals about to be eaten.  It’s invidious.  Yes, they look delicious – but only the poster gets to eat them.   Is this the modern equivalent to hunting photos?  Think Teddy Roosevelt standing next to a bear, elephant, water buffalo, etc., etc.  “I bagged this.  You didn’t.”  Regulation to moderate the Facebook food practice seems to be in order.  California and the EU should be amenable.

There is, naturally, no study showing use of any Merc offering correlating to anything but bliss.

-Alfred E. Numen

Published in: on August 20, 2013 at 9:16 am  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Isn’t misery pretty common for teens & twentyers, anyway?

  2. Dear Quimbob,

    Your question led me to violate the canons of blogging ethics and actually read the study I commented on, which can be found here: http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0069841

    The study found that within the group of teens and twentyers, more FB use correlated to more negative responses to questions related to well being. The researchers tried to isolate the effects of FB use within the group, so in that sense they controlled for its general misery.

    The authors did acknowledge “examining whether these findings generalize to additional age groups is important.” So, we can look forward to learning whether FB users posting photos of cute toddlers and crisp graduates harbor inner anomie.


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