Friday, September 10, 2010

The Dangers of Social Networking

There has been much talk in the media lately about privacy issues with regards to social media but there are many other risks associated with this Internet phenomenon. There is no doubt that social media sites can be fun and are a great marketing tool but just as in real life, these sites attach those who would like to illegally profit or hurt users for their own gain or for misguided motives.

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBaseWhat also seems to be emerging is a couple of stigma's associated with being a Facebook user. Two recent studies have found that students who use Facebook have lower grades than non-users. One study was performed by a psychologist at the Open University of the Netherlands found that Facebook users have 20% lower graders as compared to non-users. Another study at Ohio State University found similar results claiming that Facebook users have significantly lower grade then non-users. As with all research, I'm sure that there was some confounding variables in these studies and both make the statement that Facebook was probably not the direct cause of lower grades but the distraction of playing games, chatting with users and reading updates could have distracted students from their studies.

And then there's a study from the University of Toronto that found Facebook users to be narcissistic. The study examined 100 students and found a direct correlation between the amount of time someone spends on Facebook and how narcissistic he or she is. What the study was  unclear on is whether narcissistic people are more likely to use Facebook or if Facebook plants narcissism into their personalities. The study also found that many Facebook users have low self-esteem. What this indicated that Facebook users are not getting the attention they want in the real world so they turn to Facebook for acceptance. I hope some one does a similar study on Twitter and I'm sure that the narcissism scale would be through the roof for most Twitters.
Enhanced by Zemanta

No comments:

Post a Comment