Social network activity and social well-beingMoira Burke                  Cameron Marlow and Thomas LentoCarnegie Mellon U...
Does the Internet make you lonely?
Impact of technology on social well-beingTechnology displacesAmericans’ core social networksdecliningInternet use displace...
Impact of technology on social well-beingTechnology displaces                                 Technology augmentsAmericans...
Not all time online is equal
Kinds of Facebook activitiesDirected communication with another friend   (e.g., messages in/out, wall                     ...
Kinds of Facebook activitiesDirected communication with another friend   (e.g., feed stories clicked,Passive consumption o...
Kinds of Facebook activitiesDirected communication with another friend   (e.g., time spent playing gamesPassive consumptio...
Directly interacting with friends                                      Social well-beingPassively consuming social news
Well-being measures                         Williams, 2006; Ellison, et al., 2007; Russell, 1996Bridging social capital: a...
Well-being measures                          Williams, 2006; Ellison, et al., 2007; Russell, 1996Bridging social capital: ...
Well-being measures                              Williams, 2006; Ellison, et al., 2007; Russell, 1996Bridging social capit...
HypothesesDirected communication(e.g., messages in/out, wall posts, likes, comments, distinct friends communicated with. s...
MethodSurvey of 1193 English-speaking, adult Facebook users around the worldrecruited through Facebook ad.Paired two month...
Results: Overall site useOverall, greater Facebook use* is associated with greater well-being:         •    higher bonding...
Results                                Bridging        Bonding      LonelinessIntercept                        3.90 ***   ...
Results                                Bridging        Bonding      LonelinessIntercept                        3.90 ***   ...
Results                                Bridging        Bonding      LonelinessIntercept                        3.90 ***   ...
Results: Facebook activitiesDirected communication     H1. Bonding social capital increases with directed communication.  ...
Results: Facebook activitiesConsumption      H3. Bridging social capital will increase with consumption.          People f...
Results: Facebook activitiesConsumption      H3. Bridging social capital will increase with consumption.          People f...
Current work • Determining causality through longitudinal panel design. • Recruiting new waves of participants to account ...
Summary• Not all social networking site activities are equal:      • Direct communication with friends is associated with ...
Bonus slides
Non-response biasParticipants were recruited through an ad on Facebook.A comparable sample of 1200 users was randomly sele...
Facebook intensity scale(Ellison, Steinfeld, & Lampe, 2007; Steinfeld et al., 2008)   • About how many total Facebook frie...
Results: Validating Facebook intensity scalePeople are generally good at reporting friend count (r=.96) and time onsite (r...
Social network activity and social well-being
Social network activity and social well-being
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Social network activity and social well-being

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Slides from ACM CHI 2010 in Atlanta, GA, April 11-16, 2010. Empirical study on the connection between direct communication and passive consumption of social news online and social well-being.

Related paper is available here: http://thoughtcrumbs.com/publications/burke_chi2010_sns_and_wellbeing.pdf

Published in: Technology, Health & Medicine
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  • I really liked this paper, and I was hoping you'd post your slides!

    For the benefit of others who may come here before encountering the paper, here's a link to a blog post that includes a link to the 4-page CHI 2010 paper the slides are based on:
    http://www.thoughtcrumbs.com/2010/01/social-network-activity-and-social-well.shtml
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Social network activity and social well-being

  1. 1. Social network activity and social well-beingMoira Burke Cameron Marlow and Thomas LentoCarnegie Mellon University Facebook
  2. 2. Does the Internet make you lonely?
  3. 3. Impact of technology on social well-beingTechnology displacesAmericans’ core social networksdecliningInternet use displaces offlinecommunication, increases stress,depression, lonelinessMcPherson, Smith-Lovin, & Brashears, 2006;Putnam, 2001; Kraut, et al., 1998; Shklovski,Kraut, & Rainie, 2004; Bessière, Kiesler, Kraut, &Boneva, 2008; Waestlund, Norlander, & Archer,2001 3
  4. 4. Impact of technology on social well-beingTechnology displaces Technology augmentsAmericans’ core social networks Internet users have greater civicdeclining participation, are in more frequent contact with friendsInternet use displaces offline Heavy Facebook users havecommunication, increases stress, higher levels of social capital,depression, loneliness with greater gains for students with low self-esteem.McPherson, Smith-Lovin, & Brashears, 2006; Hampton, Sessions, Her, & Rainie, 2009;Putnam, 2001; Kraut, et al., 1998; Shklovski, Valenzuela, Park, & Lee, 2009; Wellman, QuanKraut, & Rainie, 2004; Bessière, Kiesler, Kraut, & Haase, Witte, & Hampton, 2001; Ellison,Boneva, 2008; Waestlund, Norlander, & Archer, Steinfeld, & Lampe, 2007; Steinfeld et al., 20082001 4
  5. 5. Not all time online is equal
  6. 6. Kinds of Facebook activitiesDirected communication with another friend (e.g., messages in/out, wall posts, likes, comments, distinctPassive consumption of others’ social news friends communicated with)Non-social activities 8
  7. 7. Kinds of Facebook activitiesDirected communication with another friend (e.g., feed stories clicked,Passive consumption of others’ social news profiles viewed, photos viewed)Non-social activities 9
  8. 8. Kinds of Facebook activitiesDirected communication with another friend (e.g., time spent playing gamesPassive consumption of others’ social news and quizzes)Non-social activities 10
  9. 9. Directly interacting with friends Social well-beingPassively consuming social news
  10. 10. Well-being measures Williams, 2006; Ellison, et al., 2007; Russell, 1996Bridging social capital: access to new information through diverse acquaintances “I come in contact with new people all the time.” “Interacting with people makes me want to try new things.” 12
  11. 11. Well-being measures Williams, 2006; Ellison, et al., 2007; Russell, 1996Bridging social capital: access to new information through diverse acquaintances “I come in contact with new people all the time.” “Interacting with people makes me want to try new things.”Bonding social capital: emotional support from close friends “There are several people I trust to help solve my problems.” “If I needed a very large emergency loan, I know someone I can turn to.” 13
  12. 12. Well-being measures Williams, 2006; Ellison, et al., 2007; Russell, 1996Bridging social capital: access to new information through diverse acquaintances “I come in contact with new people all the time.” “Interacting with people makes me want to try new things.”Bonding social capital: emotional support from close friends “There are several people I trust to help solve my problems.” “If I needed a very large emergency loan, I know someone I can turn to.”Loneliness: difference between desired and actual social interaction “I often feel that there are people I can talk to.” “I often feel isolated from others.” 14
  13. 13. HypothesesDirected communication(e.g., messages in/out, wall posts, likes, comments, distinct friends communicated with. scale α = 0.94)H1. Bonding social capital will increase with directed communication.H2. Loneliness will decrease with directed communication.Passive consumption(e.g., feed stories clicked, profiles viewed, photos viewed, distinct friends’ news/photos/profiles consumed.scale α = 0.86)H3. Bridging social capital will increase with consumption.H4. Loneliness will be associated with consumption. 15
  14. 14. MethodSurvey of 1193 English-speaking, adult Facebook users around the worldrecruited through Facebook ad.Paired two months of site activity data with survey responses.Subset (n=155) also completed Facebook intensity scale (see paper).Sensitivity analyses on friend-count buckets.Controls • age • gender • country • in relationship • self-esteem (Rosenberg, 1989) • life satisfaction (Diener, et al., 1997) 16
  15. 15. Results: Overall site useOverall, greater Facebook use* is associated with greater well-being: • higher bonding social capital (p < .001) • higher bridging social capital (p < .001) • lower loneliness (p < .01)Results generalize to non college-age users (n=487 over age 35) and thoseoutside the US (n=993 from South Africa, New Zealand, Great Britain,Ireland, Canada, and 15 others).* time on site, friend count, “broadcast” content produced (e.g., status updates, photos) 17
  16. 16. Results Bridging Bonding LonelinessIntercept 3.90 *** 3.80 *** 2.50 ***Age 0.00 -0.01 ** 0.00Male -0.02 -0.10 * 0.08 *In relationship -0.11 ** -0.05 -0.09 * Demographic andSelf-esteem 0.23 *** 0.30 *** -0.53 *** personal controlsLife satisfaction 0.02 0.10 *** -0.16 ***Time on site (log2) 0.00 0.06 -0.04Friend count (log2) 0.14 *** 0.09 * -0.07 *Content production 0.07 -0.09 . 0.04Directed communication 0.08 . 0.11 * -0.11 *Consumption -0.10 * -0.09 . 0.15 ****** p < .001 ** p < .01 * p < .05 . p < 0.15-pt Likert scale responses 18
  17. 17. Results Bridging Bonding LonelinessIntercept 3.90 *** 3.80 *** 2.50 ***Age 0.00 -0.01 ** 0.00Male -0.02 -0.10 * 0.08 *In relationship -0.11 ** -0.05 -0.09 *Self-esteem 0.23 *** 0.30 *** -0.53 ***Life satisfaction 0.02 0.10 *** -0.16 ***Time on site (log2) 0.00 0.06 -0.04Friend count (log2) 0.14 *** 0.09 * -0.07 * Overall site engagementContent production 0.07 -0.09 . 0.04Directed communication 0.08 . 0.11 * -0.11 *Consumption -0.10 * -0.09 . 0.15 ****** p < .001 ** p < .01 * p < .05 . p < 0.15-pt Likert scale responses 19
  18. 18. Results Bridging Bonding LonelinessIntercept 3.90 *** 3.80 *** 2.50 ***Age 0.00 -0.01 ** 0.00Male -0.02 -0.10 * 0.08 *In relationship -0.11 ** -0.05 -0.09 *Self-esteem 0.23 *** 0.30 *** -0.53 ***Life satisfaction 0.02 0.10 *** -0.16 ***Time on site (log2) 0.00 0.06 -0.04Friend count (log2) 0.14 *** 0.09 * -0.07 *Content production 0.07 -0.09 . 0.04Directed communication 0.08 . 0.11 * -0.11 * Facebook activitiesConsumption -0.10 * -0.09 . 0.15 ****** p < .001 ** p < .01 * p < .05 . p < 0.15-pt Likert scale responses 20
  19. 19. Results: Facebook activitiesDirected communication H1. Bonding social capital increases with directed communication. H2. Loneliness decreases with directed communication. No relationship with bridging social capital. Bridging Bonding LonelinessDirected communication 0.08 . 0.11 * -0.11 *Passive consumption -0.10 * -0.09 . 0.15 *** *** p < .001 ** p < .01 * p < .05 . p < 0.1 21
  20. 20. Results: Facebook activitiesConsumption H3. Bridging social capital will increase with consumption. People felt less access to new ideas and diverse friends the more content they consumed. Bridging Bonding LonelinessDirected communication 0.08 . 0.11 * -0.11 *Passive consumption -0.10 * -0.09 . 0.15 ****** p < .001 ** p < .01 * p < .05 . p < 0.1 22
  21. 21. Results: Facebook activitiesConsumption H3. Bridging social capital will increase with consumption. People felt less access to new ideas and diverse friends the more content they consumed. H4. Loneliness will be associated with consumption. People felt lonelier the more content they consumed. No relationship with bonding social capital. Bridging Bonding LonelinessDirected communication 0.08 . 0.11 * -0.11 *Passive consumption -0.10 * -0.09 . 0.15 ****** p < .001 ** p < .01 * p < .05 . p < 0.1 23
  22. 22. Current work • Determining causality through longitudinal panel design. • Recruiting new waves of participants to account for ad-based response bias. • Including tie strength in passive consumption analysis. • Identifying impact of personality and individual differences (e.g., social skills and communication comfort). 24
  23. 23. Summary• Not all social networking site activities are equal: • Direct communication with friends is associated with greater bonding social capital and lower loneliness. • Passive consumption of social news is associated with lower bridging social capital and greater loneliness.Thanks to Nicole Ellison, Adam Kramer, Bob Kraut, Cliff Lampe, SheilaNormile, Meg Sloan, Facebook Data and Market Research Teams.NSF IIS-0325049, IIS-0729286, NSF GRFP. Moira Burke @grammarnerd moira@cmu.edu 25
  24. 24. Bonus slides
  25. 25. Non-response biasParticipants were recruited through an ad on Facebook.A comparable sample of 1200 users was randomly selected from English-speakers who had used the site in the past month.Survey takers: • were slightly older (M=33.7 vs. 33.0 years, p<.05) • spent more time on the site (M=1.7 hours per day vs. 0.5, p<.001 for log2(minutes)) • had more friends (M=185.6 vs. 170.0, p<.001), • were more likely to be women (p<.001) • more likely to be from outside the U.S. (p<.001). 27
  26. 26. Facebook intensity scale(Ellison, Steinfeld, & Lampe, 2007; Steinfeld et al., 2008) • About how many total Facebook friends do you have? • In the past week, on average, approximately how many minutes per day have you spent on Facebook? • Facebook is part of my everyday activity • I am proud to tell people Im on Facebook • Facebook has become part of my daily routine • I feel out of touch when I havent logged onto Facebook for a while • I feel I am part of the Facebook community • I would be sorry if Facebook shut down 28
  27. 27. Results: Validating Facebook intensity scalePeople are generally good at reporting friend count (r=.96) and time onsite (r=.45).But attitude questions (“Facebook has become part of my daily routine”)not strongly correlated with any plausible engagement metrics like contentproduction (r=.14) or return visits in past month (r=.14).Self-reports subject to acquiescence and central tendency biases. Butserver data don’t explain engagement. 29

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