Leading VOIP and cheap call provider Rebtel asked 1,632 American adults what effects social networks had on them. In a classic can’t-live-with-it, can’t-live-without-it scenario, almost 20 percent of American adults said Facebook was the social network that has the “most negative effect” on their mood, and another 20 percent said it caused them the most stress.
However, Facebook is also the site that almost half of Americans said was the most positive.
In other words, Facebook is such a big part of our lives that our experience of the site pretty much mirrors our experience of life: sometimes our friends piss us off, sometimes they make us sad, but more often, they make us happy.
One thing that’s almost guaranteed to drive your friends nuts? Including them in status updates and location check-ins. 45 percent of us don’t like it when we appear in social media updates that others create, and 70 percent say that’s because they don’t like to broadcast their location.
LinkedIn, Twitter, and Youtube caused almost no stress, as did MySpace. In MySpace’s case, of course, that’s because no-one actually uses the site anymore. But the social media site that are the most positive are Instagram and Pinterest, with only .3 percent and .1 percent, respectively, saying they were stressed out by those services.
One other interesting data point the Rebtel survey highlighted is how social media makes us feel.
On days when we check into social accounts more frequently than normal, we’re typically bored. Of course … that might be the reason we’re checking in in the first place. But on days when we’re checking in less frequently than normal, we’re typically feeling left out, like we’re missing out on something.
In other words, we’re addicted.
VB's research team is studying web-personalization... Chime in here, and we’ll share the results.