A new study of thousands of young Facebook users showed that being away from the social network makes people less depressed, more productive, and more efficient about money.
The researchers who oversaw the research compared the activities of more than 1,750 US undergraduates in 2017 who stayed away from Facebook for a week or stayed on the social media platform.
The study, titled “The Economic Implications of Facebook,” and published in Experimental Economics magazine, revealed that moving away from the social network has caused people to consume less news in general. The other part reduces their awareness of false news non-mainstream.
The economist and team member Roberto Mosquera of the Universidad de las Américas in Ecuador and his colleagues studied the case of 1,765 students using Facebook at the University of Texas A-M.
The researchers divided the people involved in the study into two groups, one of whom stayed away from Facebook for a week, while the other group continued to use the platform during the same period. They found that students who stopped using Facebook were more productive, less depressed, and engaged in healthy activities.
The researchers explained that the social network has significant impacts on important aspects of life that are not directly related to the construction and support of social networks.
The researchers also asked the volunteers how much they wanted to receive as compensation for neglecting Facebook for a week. They found on average that participants felt that a week on Facebook was worth $ 67, a large part of the weekly budget for the average student.
This value has increased by almost 20%, a week after leaving the platform, and researchers point out that this increased value is typical of the platform’s dependency relationship.
In addition to the health and financial impacts, the researchers also found that participants who took a break from the social media platform also consumed less news.
They said that the restriction of the largest social network in the world had reduced news consumption. Participants are not looking for other sources of information or other social media platforms as they move away from Facebook. for a short time.
Roberto Mosquera and his team also said that students who left Facebook were less and less aware of volatile political information sources. There is no impact on awareness of information from primary sources, “he said.
He added that the discovery supports a previous study that said Facebook could serve as an important channel for non-mainstream news sources and fake news.