Friday, 23 March 2012

Study Suggests Link Between Narcissism And Facebook

There may be a direct link between the number of friends you have on Facebook and just how much of a “socially disruptive” narcissist you are, according to a recent study published in the journal of Personality and Individual Differences. Facebook habits of 294 students between the age of 18 and 65 were studied by researchers at Western Illinois University. They also measured two of what they describe as  ”socially disruptive” elements of narcissism- grandiose exhibitionism (GE- having to be at the center of attention), and entitlement/exploitativeness (EE-  having a sense of self entitlement/deserving of respect) of the students. The study found that those who scored highly on the Narcissistic Personality Inventory questionnaire changed their profile pictures more often, responded more aggressively to negative comment about them on their Facebook walls, tagged themselves more often, and updated their news feeds more regularly. Carol Craig, a social scientist and chief executive of the Centre for Confidence and Well-being stated: “Facebook provides a platform for people to self-promote by changing profile pictures and showing how many hundreds of friends you have. I know of some who have more than 1,000.” According to the Guardian, Christopher Carpenter, who ran the study, said: “If Facebook is to be a place where people go to repair their damaged ego and seek social support, it is vitally important to discover the potentially negative communication one might find on Facebook and the kinds of people likely to engage in them. Ideally, people will engage in pro-social Facebooking rather than anti-social me-booking.” Are we really narcissistic? Or could it simply be we are just bored? Or maybe just really friendly and outgoing, looking to meet new people? Do you think these researchers are reading just a little too much into it?