Have You Noticed ~ Facebook And ERs Have This In Common

Right this very minute there are billions of Facebook pages rippling with hundreds of millions of messages. Some petty, a few profound, most self-indulgent, say like many of my own. However one looks at Facebook, it has now reached the status where universities feel intellectually obliged to study it.

And so we have a new research program at the University of Michigan where social psychologist Ethan Kross tells TheAtlantic.com: “Rather than enhance well-being, we find that Facebook use predicts the opposite effect. It undermines it.”

How about that, fellow Facebookers….? Are you feeling down…?

Research among 82 university subjects demonstrated frequent Facebook use led to feelings of envy, sadness, loneliness and anger. In contrast, these subjects found face-to-face contacts far more uplifting and satisfying. The researchers speculate: “Because people tend to post an idealized version of their lives and its many activities, visitors to their pages feel their own lives drab by comparison….”

So is the data saying posters feel a boost while readers feel a bust? Or maybe both. Or maybe it’s not saying very much at all. Meanwhile another research project reported by NBCNews.com has concluded that of all the alcohol related injuries admitted to emergency rooms, 15% had been drinking Budweiser with Steel Reserve Malt Liquor a close second.

Personally I have no problem with the science of data research. But looking at these two examples, I wonder if the data are often much-ado-about-nothing. A charge non-academics have been grumbling over their drinks for generations. Oh wait…! I’m getting a picture…! The grumblers are all drinking Bud.

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