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Wednesday 11 November 2015

Research shows higher rate of happiness among non-users of Facebook

Research shows higher rate of happiness among non-users of Facebook

can contribute to more happiness, according to a Danish study on users of the social networking site.
The findings were based on a week-long survey of 1,095 Facebook users, who were divided into two groups, Meik Wiking, chief executive of The Happines Research Institute said on Wednesday.

“One half would continue to use Facebook as normal, that was our control group, and the other half were asked not to log on to Facebook for a week,” he told newsmen.

A week later, the two groups were assessed again and there was an increase in the average happiness rating among those who took a break from Facebook.

On a 10-point scale, their average increased 0.5 points – rising from 7.56 to 8.12 points, while the group that continued to use Facebook showed only a marginal change, the report said.

“The finding, I was most surprised about was how much life satisfaction increased in our treatment group, the people who had a break from Facebook,” Wiking said.

The researchers had not been sure they would be able to detect any effect at all in such a short period of a week, he added.

The group, who had a break from Facebook were also less stressed, more decisive and felt “more present in the moment,” the report said.

The survey was conducted at the end of October, and comprised Danish Facebook users, aged from 17 to their 70s.
“Ironically, we recruited people via Facebook,” Wiking said.

About 10-15 per cent of the users in the group that took a break, conceded after the survey was completed that they had actually logged on to Facebook.

Wiking, who signed up as well and was randomly put in the treatment group, said he was forced to drop out as he had to check an address to a party that was posted on Facebook.

He said the think tank plans a follow-up, including tracking the groups to see if there was a long-term effect and if users would return to previous Facebook behaviour.

The research was titled The Facebook Experiment: Does Social Media Affect the Quality of our Lives

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