How Social Media Is Hurting Your Memory

Each day, hundreds of millions of people document and share their experiences on social media, from packed parties to the most intimate family moments. Social platforms let us stay in touch with friends and forge new relationships like never before, but those increases in communication and social connection may come at a cost. In a new paper published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, researchers showed that those who documented and shared their experiences on social media formed less precise memories of those events. In a series of three studies led…

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Social media helps researchers get more citations: Study

social media

Researchers found good papers that get pushed on social media are what end up on people’s minds. A good research pushed through social media — primarily Twitter — gets more citations, a team of researchers has found. Analysing the famous academic aphorism “publish or perish” through a modern digital lens, a group of emerging ecologists and conservation scientists from the University of Alberta found good papers that get pushed on social media are what end up on people’s minds. “There’s a compelling signal that citation rates are positively associated with…

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Social media is affecting the way we view our bodies — and it’s not good

Eighty-eight percent of women said they compare themselves to images in the media — and most find the comparison unfavorable, according to new survey results. It’s no secret that social media, with its style stars and perfectly toned fitness gurus, can have a negative effect on our self-esteem. Now, new research from the Florida House Experience, a mental health and addiction treatment facility, shows just how damaging all that scrolling can be. It also reveals the different factors that affect how men and women feel about their bodies. Women, for instance, are…

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How does using social media affect our mental health?

In light of Mental Health Awareness Week, many Canadians are speaking up to stop discrimination and stigma that can surround mental illness. Matt Battochio examines how social media use can affect mental health and what secondhand exposure to tragedy can do to someone. Tragic events like the Humboldt Broncos bus crash and the Toronto van attack are devastating for so many and in the wake of such shocking incidents it’s often difficult to think of anything else. In an age where news spreads so quickly, people can also be inundated…

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Animal activism in the time of social media

For many, social media has become an outlet for spreading ill-informed social opinions and misguided facts to an audience that already agrees with one’s own ideas and concepts. This bare-minimum style of advocacy, known as slacktivism, has been on the rise and still continues to thrive. However, with the growing power of social media, it is possible that what was once a place for long rants in little pockets, today has the power to change public opinion, mobilse activists, and even galvanise movements. Social media has had a huge role to play in movements such as #ArabSpring,…

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Social media copies gambling methods ‘to create psychological cravings’

Social media

Social media platforms are using the same techniques as gambling firms to create psychological dependencies and ingrain their products in the lives of their users, experts warn. These methods are so effective they can activate similar mechanisms as cocaine in the brain, create psychological cravings and even invoke “phantom calls and notifications” where users sense the buzz of a smartphone, even when it isn’t really there. “Facebook, Twitter and other companies use methods similar to the gambling industry to keep users on their sites,” said Natasha Schüll, the author of Addiction by…

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Warm, sunny days trigger happier posts on social networks

iphone

  Warm, sunny days trigger happier posts on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter while cold, wet and humid surroundings generally spoil the mood, leading to less frequent social media outings, an interesting research has revealed. Based on the analysis of billions of Twitter and Facebook posts, the team of scientists has shown that we prefer warm, sunny days rather than days which are cold and wet. “Our study is the first to observe and measure the relationship between good weather and frame of mind using billions of posts on Twitter and…

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Book review: Evolution of an e-revolution

India social book

In his latest book, India Social, computer engineer-turned-activist/politician (and now author) Ankit Lal writes about this mass e-movement called social media and how it helped shape India’s policies in the past decade or so. There were over two billion social media users worldwide—with Indians accounting for about 168 million—in 2016, as per reports. Social networking already accounts for 28% of all media time spent online—users aged between 15 and 19 years spend about three hours a day on an average on sites such as Twitter and Facebook around the world.…

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‘Biased’ social media algos making women less visible

WASHINGTON: Social media and the sharing economy have created new opportunities by leveraging online networks to build trust and remove marketplace barriers. However, a growing body of research suggests that old gender and racial biases persist, from men’s greater popularity on Twitter to African Americans’ lower acceptance rates on Airbnb. Using the photo-sharing site Instagram as a test case, researchers from Columbia University in the US showed how two common recommendation algorithms amplify a network effect known as homophily in which similar or like-minded people cluster together. They further show…

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Book libraries hit by social media

Book libraries in India were under threat from social media, which has also affected the habit of reading, especially among the youth, said participants at a seminar in Agra on Sunday. Eminent poets, writers, and social activists lamented the slow but sure death of “book reading habit”, especially among the younger generation, at the event at John’s Public Library. Rajendra Milan, poet and retired librarian, quoted Gulzar’s “Kitaben jhankti hain band almaari ke sheeshon se… (books peer through the glass from locked cupboards),” to lament the decline of actual readers…

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