Posted by & filed under Development of the Self, Health Psychology, Motivation-Emotion, Social Influence, Social Perception, Stress Coping - Health, The Self.

Description: You have most certainly heard more than a few concerns offered or even alarms raised regarding the potentially negative effects arising from social media use particularly among teams. Many have arisen from population level observations of correlations between rates of social media use and anxiety or depression or other negative outcomes, but such studies typically do not directly assess social media use and outcome variables such as self-esteem at the individual level. What would be interesting would be if some researchers could gather together and pool the results of many studies that looked and social media use and self-esteem, that is, conduct a meta-analysis of such a pooled data set and tell us what the cumulative results suggest. Well, guess what, you can read the article linked below and find out about what just such a meta-analytic study has to say about this question.

Source: New Analysis: Social Media Use Is Harmful to Self-Esteem, Mark Travers, Social Instincts, Psychology Today.

Date: November 30, 2019

Photo Credit: Pixnio

Article Link:

So, the main finding of the meta-analytic study that social media use has a slight negative effect on self-esteem overall IS interesting.  It is also important to pay close attention to the other things the researchers say in their article. These include that effect was small, that only lower self-esteem but not higher self esteem and social media use was examined, and that while the observed effect could be due to social media use interfering with face-to-fact interaction, though levels or rates of face-to-fact interaction were not assessed and finally there is the question of whether social media use lowers self-esteem or that low self esteem leads to more social media use. Oh, and did all the studies examined measure self-esteem the same way? Yup, more research is needed.

Questions for Discussion:

  1. How are social media use and self-esteem related?
  2. Does it make sense to assume that the relationship between social media use and self-esteem is unidirectional, (only makes for lower self-esteem)?
  3. What other things, beside self-esteem, would be good to look at in relation to social media use?

References (Read Further):

Saiphoo, A. N., Halevi, L. D., & Vahedi, Z. (2020). Social networking site use and self-esteem: A meta-analytic review. Personality and Individual Differences, 153, 109639.

Blomfield Neira, C. J., & Barber, B. L. (2014). Social networking site use: Linked to adolescents’ social self‐concept, self‐esteem, and depressed mood. Australian Journal of Psychology, 66(1), 56-64.

Steinfield, C., Ellison, N. B., & Lampe, C. (2008). Social capital, self-esteem, and use of online social network sites: A longitudinal analysis. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 29(6), 434-445.

Andreassen, C. S., Pallesen, S., & Griffiths, M. D. (2017). The relationship between addictive use of social media, narcissism, and self-esteem: Findings from a large national survey. Addictive behaviors, 64, 287-293.