Jeff Smith 2 p.m., Dec. 18
SDSU Professor Connects Narcissism and Social Network Sites
Facebook and other social networks can connect long-lost friends and those in faraway places, but that's not all, they also allow the user to get in touch with the people they love the most, themselves.
According to a new study conducted by researchers from the University of Georgia and San Diego State University Professor Jean Twenge, social networks boost narcissism as well as self-esteem.
"Despite the name ‘social networks,' much user activity on networking sites is self-focused," said Brittany Gentile, a doctoral candidate at the University of Georgia, in a statement on the college's website.
Researchers found that those logging on to Facebook usually feel better about themselves. And for those logging on to MySpace, well they come away loving more about themselves.
"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 University of Georgia psychology professor Keith Campbell. "They are feeling better about themselves in both cases. But in one they are tapping into narcissism and in the other into self-esteem."
SDSU professor Jean Twenge, who was part of the study, has looked into the modern narcissist for years. In 2007, Twenge said college students were more self-centered than students in previous years. Two years later, Twenge authored the book, "Generation Me: Why Today's Young Americans Are More Confident, Assertive, Entitled--and More Miserable Than Ever Before."
The latest study on social networks appears in the journal Computers in Human Behavior.
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- Generation Me: Why Today's Young Americans Are More Confident, Assertive, Entitled, and More Miserable Than Ever Before — May 25, 2006
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