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Too Much Facebook Makes Girls Depressed... Or Depressed Girls Use Facebook?

from the cause?-effect? dept

And here's another bit of a moral panic-inducing study about social networking -- with a professor at Stony Brook University suggesting that girls who do more regular communicating via Facebook, SMS, email and other tools, are more likely to be depressed. The study's authors suggest that girls get stuck in a rut communicating about their problems, reinforcing those problems and depressing the kids. The more they discussed their romantic ups and downs, the more likely they were to be depressed.

Of course, aren't there questions about cause and effect here? Wouldn't a more reasonable explanation be that those who were already more depressed are more likely to make use of these tools to wallow in their depression?

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  1. identicon
    bigpicture, 2 Feb 2009 @ 4:43pm

    Re: THere's the other side

    Exactly the point that I made the last time he posted on this subject. It's not the tool but the user of the tool, "guns don't kill people, people kill people by using guns".

    People become what they think about all day long. Depressing thoughts, depressed people. "My clothes are not as stylish as hers", "Her hair is more shiny than mine", "my boyfriend dumped me" etc. etc.

    Is it Facebook that does this? Maybe it's a fixating or magnifying tool I don't know, but it does not create the thoughts, because that is a life direction cultural function thing. Look at TV ads, teen magazines etc. and there you have it. The general message on impressionable minds is "you are not good enough, you need this thing to make you better and more attractive and lovable".

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