The Psychology of Social Networking

Expanding your social network beyond your familiar circle of friends can have surprising benefits. It's those weak ties that bring fresh ideas and unexpected opportunities: a job, an apartment, a mate. The Internet is providing new tools for cultivating and capitalizing on those networks; someone you've never met in person could change your life.

Recent posts on Social Networking

Art Therapy and Social Media

Social networking platforms are technically not "tools" found in a proverbial digital art therapy toolbox-- or are they?

Why You Should Not Brag on Social Media

By Utpal Dholakia on February 19, 2018 in The Science Behind Behavior
Boast posts of professional accomplishments on social media have negative repercussions.

Why Popular Culture Psychology? What's the Point?

What do trains, baseball, and Batman have to do with teaching real math or science, including psychological science? What does real science have to do with fictional characters?

Parents, Cyber-Sex, and Children

By Mark Banschick M.D. on February 12, 2018 in The Intelligent Divorce
Cyber-sex isn't going away, and children are naturally curious about their parents. Something has to give, and sadly, it can be a child's innocence.

Some People Call Them Posts, Attorneys Call Them Exhibit A

By Sue Scheff on February 12, 2018 in Shame Nation
Everything you send or post today has the potential to end up in a court of law, and 1 in 10 people will share your private information without your permission.

Tips for Landing a Good Job

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on February 12, 2018 in How To Do Life
Ideas from my new book, Careers for Dummies, for people who dislike networking.

Facebook's Changes Could Be Bad for Your Mental Health

Facebook is making some changes in 2018 and studies show the changes to user's news feeds could be bad for their psychological well-being.

The Wisdom of Crowds

What can we really glean from social media? A new study suggests our comments on Twitter can go a long way.

Flaws in the Algo: How Social Media Fuel Political Extremism

By Christopher Lane Ph.D. on February 09, 2018 in Side Effects
New research documents just how forcefully social media algorithms are driving polarization.

Helping Young Gay/Bi Men of Color to Stay HIV-Negative

By John-Manuel Andriote on February 06, 2018 in Stonewall Strong
If nothing changes, the CDC projects that 50 percent of African-American, and 25 percent of Hispanic/Latino, gay and bisexual men will become infected with HIV in their lifetime.

Is Facebook Making Us Narcissistic?

Is social media making us more narcissistic? Studies suggest we are exposed more to narcissists online - and the medium itself may promote narcissistic relating.

Five Tips for Safe Online Dating

Do you worry about your safety when you meet someone online? A few basic precautions can help you stay safe.

Constructing Modern Selves 2: The Electronic Self

We moderns support the idea that cultural selves – typically jolly, attractive, and ready to please – are more appealing than the ordinary people we are confronting now.

Social Media Sucks the Secrets Out of Friendship

By Anneli Rufus on January 31, 2018 in Stuck
It blurs the borders between private and public, between existence and performance.

Why Your Smartphone Is Destroying Your Life

By Anna Akbari Ph.D. on January 30, 2018 in Startup Your Life
Your phone is affecting your happiness - and it's worse than you think.

@BFSkinnyMan: On the Psychology of Instagram Fitness Culture

By Benjamin M. Seitz on January 29, 2018 in Hardwired to Learn
Our brains haven't evolved to reward us for eating healthy or exercising. Can we engineer our own feedback loops to promote these behaviors?

Is Facebook Destroying Society and Your Mental Health?

Former Facebook insiders as well as researchers are raising red flags about social media. Here's what you need to know to make your decision about using social media.

Does Using Social Media Make You Lonely?

By David Ludden Ph.D. on January 24, 2018 in Talking Apes
Social media use can increase feelings of connectedness or of loneliness, depending on what you do when you're online.

Commander-in-Tweet: Why We Accept Shameful Behavior

By Sue Scheff on January 23, 2018 in Shame Nation
After a year in office, a new survey has indexed over 2000 of the Presidents Tweets to find out what Americans are really thinking about our Commander-in-Tweet.

Identifying Depression Based on Social Media Posts

Researchers are working on algorithms that they hope could be used to detect cases of depression and PTSD.

Will Changes to Facebook's Newsfeed Be Good for Us?

By Gwendolyn Seidman Ph.D. on January 17, 2018 in Close Encounters
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently announced changes to what people will see in their Facebook newsfeed. Will these changes be psychologically beneficial, as promised?

Micro-Cheating

By Sam Louie MA, LMHC on January 16, 2018 in Minority Report
Do you find your partner's emojis to others too flirty or just too much with someone else? If so, your romantic relationship could be victim to "micro-cheating".

Is Facebook Spying on an Ex-Flame The New Normal?

Has Facebook stalking become the new normal? Research indicates that post-break up covert monitoring of an ex-flame after a breakup is increasingly common.

Are You Facebook Friends With a Psychopath? How to Tell

Worried about Facebook friending a psychopath? When it comes to spotting dark personalities on Facebook, research reveals red flags.

Post-Traumatic Growth and Post-Traumatic Stress Can Coexist

By Christopher Bergland on January 14, 2018 in The Athlete's Way
We commonly associate PTSD with natural disasters. Surprisingly, a new study reports that personal growth can coexist with post-traumatic stress in the years following.

Mr. Zuckerberg, Tear Down This Wall!

Mark Zuckerberg is changing the Facebook Newsfeed, again. He claims it's to help users' mental health and make Facebook a force for moral good. Don't believe the hype.

You Are Judged By Your Screen Name, So Choose Carefully

Sexual predators prey on women using provocative screen names. Yet good guys are looking too. So choose your screen name carefully.

What Would It Take?

By David P. Barash Ph.D. on January 11, 2018 in Peace and War
Could we have another early 1980s-style, grassroots movement today? It’s not impossible.

Infographic: Teen Substance Use and Media

By Michele Ybarra MPH, Ph.D. on January 10, 2018 in Connected
These statistics make clear that we must encourage the teens in our lives to think critically about how media uses different strategies to try to influence their behavior.

How Jealous Partners Use Facebook to Monitor and Manipulate

Partners do not always make good Facebook friends. How digital surveillance, manipulation, and mate-retention strategies can be harmful to your relationship.