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Cyberpsychol Behav Soc Netw. 2012 Feb;15(2):85-90. doi: 10.1089/cyber.2011.0291. Epub 2011 Oct 11.

"Are we Facebook official?" Implications of dating partners' Facebook use and profiles for intimate relationship satisfaction.

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  • 1Department of Human Development and Family Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin 53706, USA.


Extending previous research on positive and negative correlates of Facebook use for individuals' outcomes, this study examined male and female dating partners' (n=58 couples) Facebook use and portrayals of their intimate relationship on the Facebook profile. Confirming hypotheses from compatibility theories of mate selection, partners demonstrated similar Facebook intensity (e.g., usage, connection to Facebook), and were highly likely to portray their relationship on their Facebook profiles in similar ways (i.e., display partnered status and show their partner in profile picture). These Facebook profile choices played a role in the overall functioning of the relationship, with males' indications of a partnered status linked with higher levels of their own and their partners' (marginal) relationship satisfaction, and females' displays of their partner in their profile picture linked with higher levels of their own and their partners' relationship satisfaction. Finally, male and female reports of having had disagreements over the Facebook relationship status was associated with lower level of females' but not males' relationship satisfaction, after accounting for global verbal conflict. Thus, the findings point to the unique contribution of Facebook disagreements to intimate relationship functioning. Results from this study encourage continued examination of technology use and behaviors in contexts of intimate relationships.

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