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Cyberpsychol Behav Soc Netw. 2013 Oct;16(10):728-34. doi: 10.1089/cyber.2012.0272. Epub 2013 Jun 7.

Sharing, liking, commenting, and distressed? The pathway between Facebook interaction and psychological distress.

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1 Department of Radio-Television-Film, College of Communication, University of Texas at Austin , Austin, Texas.


Studies on the mental health implications of social media have generated mixed results. Drawing on a survey of college students (N=513), this research uses structural equation modeling to assess the relationship between Facebook interaction and psychological distress and two underlying mechanisms: communication overload and self-esteem. It is the first study, to our knowledge, that examines how communication overload mediates the mental health implications of social media. Frequent Facebook interaction is associated with greater distress directly and indirectly via a two-step pathway that increases communication overload and reduces self-esteem. The research sheds light on new directions for understanding psychological well-being in an increasingly mediated social world as users share, like, and comment more and more.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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