narcissists and people with lower self-esteem were more likely to spend more than an hour a day on Facebook and were more prone to post self-promotional photos (striking a pose or using Photoshop, for example). Narcissists were also more likely to showcase themselves through status updates (using phrases like “I’m so glamorous I bleed glitter”) and wall activity (posting self-serving links like “My Celebrity Look-alikes”).

Self-esteem and narcissism are often interrelated but don’t always go hand in hand. Some psychologists believe that narcissists—those who have a pervasive pattern of grandiosity, a need for admiration, as well as a lack of empathy—unconsciously inflate their sense of self-importance as a defense against feeling inadequate. Not enough empirical research has been produced to confirm that link, although Mehdizadeh’s study seems to support it. Because narcissists have less capacity to sustain intimate or long-term relationships, Mehdizadeh thinks that they would be more drawn to the online world of virtual friends and emotionally detached communication.

Although it seems that Facebook can be used by narcissists to fuel their inflated egos, Mehdizadeh stops short of proclaiming that excessive time spent on Facebook can turn regular users into narcissists. She also notes that social-networking sites might ultimately be found to have positive effects when used by people with low self-esteem or depression.

Reaserach by Soraya Mehdizadeh

Original paper: http://www.liebertonline.com/doi/abs/10.1089/cyber.2009.0257?journalCode=cyber

Source article: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=status-update-im-so-glamorous

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