Facebook appeals to basic, biological needs.
Yes, to some extent these social needs are tended to when you go on Facebook.
But there is a glass ceiling to how much Facebook can fill up your ‘social bar’ (like in The Sims.)
Going on Facebook gives you the impression, the illusion that these needs are being met.
And this, in large part, is thought to contribute to lower self-esteem levels and higher depression rates among the Millenial generation.
I think this is because Facebook is becoming the centrepiece of their social lives rather than a supplement.
Facebook alone can’t feed the need for social connectedness and the need to form strong, meaningful relationships with other people.
It doesn’t completely feed the need of social connectedness; it just gives you the impression that it does.
Facebook is (social) junk food.
You feel like you’ve eaten, but you haven’t eaten well.
After a while, you’re undernourished but all you’re feeding yourself with is crap.
It is a 100% parallel with diet. If you eat junk food all the time, obviously your health will deteriorate.
And there’s this question that keeps floating about:
Does Facebook cause depression? Is it cause or effect?
There is no clear cut answer but one way of looking at it would be to say that it’s a vicious cycle.
Perfectly healthy teenagers will substitute going out for FB and will start to become depressed in the same manner that they would become malnourished on a diet of junk food.
By the same token, a depressed person will go on FB to improve his mood and feel social, but will over time realise that the baseline for being social won’t be met through these means.
What do you think?
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