Expansive study finds consistent Facebook usage linked to ill-being

WION Web Team
New Delhi, IndiaEdited By: Bharat SharmaUpdated: Sep 29, 2020, 12:50 PM IST

Facebook Photograph:(Reuters)

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Do you spend a lot of your free time on Facebook? Perhaps it’s time to rethink that idea

Do you spend a lot of your free time on Facebook? Perhaps it’s time to rethink that idea.

A two-year long study recently tried to understand the impact of using the social media platform on the users happiness, and the results may not please you.

The study found that the more often you use Facebook, the more likely you are to feel unhappy. In 2016, Facebook data claimed that an average user spends 50 minutes on the portal every day. The study, carried out by Holly B Shakya from the University of California and Yale University’s Nicholas A Christakis took into account 5,208 subjects inducted across three waves - 2013, 2014, 2015.

All subjects represented a sample of the US population. For two years, their activity on Facebook was monitored by researchers.

According to the study’s results, Facebook has a negative impact on one’s well-being. Additionally, the more time one spends on social media, the more likely they are to feelings of unhappiness.

The study found that, on an average social media actions like updating one’s status, clicking on a link, and ‘liking’ caused 5-8 per cent decrease in mental health of the subjects.

The authors, in conversation with The Harvard Business Review, said that they calculated “well-being” based on self reportage of mental health and physical health by subjects.

Data about likes, clicks, average time spent, and the number of friends was also analysed directly from the accounts provided by the participants.

The researchers found that constantly liking content by others and clicking on links was linked to reduction in self-reported mental health and physical health, and satisfaction in general.

The study also added how the quantity of time one spends on Facebook plays a big role in diminishing one’s well-being.