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by Carlo Longino

Filed Under:
dangers, social networks, studies

Social Networking Will Kill You... Or Maybe Not

from the scary dept

A story doing the rounds says a new article in a British biology journal claims that social networking is harmful to your health, running under headlines like "How using Facebook could raise your risk of cancer." Apparently replacing face-to-face human contact with online socializing "could alter the way genes work, upset immune responses, hormone levels, the function of arteries, and influence mental performance," according to the BBC, leading to an increase of serious health problems -- or, put a slightly more sensationalized way, Twitter will kill you. Charles Arthur at The Guardian's tech blog actually bothered to read the entire article, not just the press release, and says the breathless stories are based on more on bad journalism than junk science. The original article doesn't ever really get into the direct effect of online social networks, beyond saying people are spending more and more time on them, and never mentions any by name; it just says people are spending less time with other people, and that biologists should work to create more awareness of the detrimental effects that can have. But hey, that's way less interesting than saying MySpace is going to rot your insides.

Reader Comments

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  1. identicon
    THE MAN, 20 Feb 2009 @ 8:30am

    Its not the Facebook that will kill you, its the fat that will kill you.

    Turn off the computer, grab the extra-reinforced handrails and climb out of your mothers basement you 'Social Network' geeks. Try being a real person and staying of the stupid computer for a little while. Computers are for work and generating revinue. If it is not going to make you money, stay off the computer and live your life. Loose some weight, meet a live friend, talk walk, get laid.....OK, I am probably going too far with that one. But you can take a walk.

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