Social network use is often accompanied by a seductive allure that compels people to showcase themselves in the best light possible. This allure may theoretically be possible due to the concept of social comparison, a notion that is measured in part by the Facebook “friend count,” a numerical value representing the user’s number of online friends in the Facebook community. As there is no known research measuring this effect on current states, to close this gap in the literature it is asserted here that a memorable loss of one of these friends can have negative consequences. This study attempted to gauge the effect of the loss of these friends, colloquially known as “being unfriended.” This piece posits that being unfriended will increase state shame and decrease state self-esteem. To that end, a quantitative, experimental study was employed using 41 male and female, college-enrolled participants from a Midwest junior college to determine vicissitudes to state shame and state self-esteem after being unfriended on Facebook. An independent measures t-test was used to compare group mean differences between those who could adequately remember being unfriended and those who had little to no recollection of a recent unfriending episode. Results of the statistical analysis revealed that participants in the treatment group had no statistically significant increase in shame or decrease in self-esteem than those in the control group. Additional research in this area is recommended to further investigate additional variables used in this study, overcome limitations, and to fully explore superfluous possibilities such as potential mediators.
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|Commitee:||Cable, Lynda, Fremont, Paula|
|Department:||Harold Abel School of Social and Behavioral Sciences|
|School Location:||United States -- Minnesota|
|Source:||DAI-B 78/09(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Social psychology, Psychology, Web Studies|
|Keywords:||Facebook, Mediation, Self-esteem, Shame, Social media, Social networking|
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