Social Media And Narcissism

Thursday, April 14, 2022 12:03:41 PM

Social Media And Narcissism



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Narcissists and #BEVERLYHILLS

Thanks to social media, narcissists can now influence large numbers of people at the press of a button, but just how is this modern-day internet phenomenon linked to such a destructive personality disorder? There are growing numbers of research studies that are looking at the ways narcissists behave online. While a definitive answer may be some years off, results from several such studies are starting to reveal the hallmarks of narcissists, their activity, and the impact of social media on the development of narcissism. Narcissists are more like to be heavy users of social media and are prone to sharing self-promotional photos and status updates — source.

The author of this study believes that because narcissists find it more difficult to sustain real life relationships, they are more naturally drawn to the world of online friendships and the emotionless communication this can create. People who take and share selfies on social media are more likely to show narcissistic tendencies — source. The study also suggested that editing photos prior to sharing was an even stronger sign that a user was a narcissist. Younger narcissists use Twitter as a megaphone to broadcast their views, while older narcissists use Facebook as a mirror to curate their image through their updates — source. The assessment of problematic social media use without distinguishing different platforms might not individuate narcissists' preferences and risks.

However, our findings need to be interpreted with caution not only due to the relatively small number of studies on this topic but also because 19 studies out 21 used a cross-sectional design. Abstract Introduction: The relationship between narcissism and social media use has been a topic of research since the advent of the first social media website. Publication types Review. Trait narcissism is considered a dimensional personality trait that consists of a grandiose self-concept as well as behaviors intended to maintain this self-concept in the face of reality e. Narcissists—a term we use as a shorthand for those scoring higher on inventories of narcissistic personality—can be divided into grandiose narcissists GNs and vulnerable narcissists VNs.

Despite these differences, grandiose and vulnerable narcissism share some core traits, such as a sense of entitlement, grandiose fantasies, and the need for admiration Dickinson and Pincus, , Pincus et al. Special emphasis has been placed on the theoretical speculation that social media are ideal environments for achieving narcissistic goals. For these reasons, some scholars e.

That is, narcissists might become addicted to the unique communicative environment offered by social media because it is conducive the fulfilment of their self-enhancement needs. Previous studies examining the association between narcissistic traits and PSMU have shown opposite findings or, at least, inconsistent results. For example, whereas some studies have found a clear positive association between grandiose narcissism and PSMU e.

To our knowledge, there is no systematic review on the association between the two forms of narcissism and PSMU. Especially the meta-analyses by Gnambs and Appel, , McCain and Campbell, are pertinent to the current study because both assessed time spent on social media. Both meta-analyses found grandiose narcissism to have a significant—albeit small—effect on social media usage intensity. Conversely, non-significant results were reported regarding the association with vulnerable narcissism. However, scholars in the field agree that time spent on social media is not necessarily indicative of problematic use for a number of reasons see Caplan, , Griffiths, First, social media use is widespread especially among young adults, who tend to report intensive use of social media without experiencing any negative outcomes.

According to Caplan , problematic use has more to do with the negative outcomes and with the deficient impulse control than with the excessive use. Second, whereas it is very likely that social media users who exhibit problematic use of these platforms tend to excessively use the Internet, the intense or prolonged use per se does not imply addictive symptoms Griffiths, or problematic behaviour. Finally, people who intensively use social media may not present all the behavioural addiction criteria that need to be simultaneously fulfilled in order to classify a behaviour as problematic Griffiths, This consensus has led scholars in the field to not adopt time spent online as an indicator of problematic behaviour and to rely on broader and more exhaustive conceptualizations of the phenomenon see Caplan, In this paper, we present a systematic literature review that synthesizes the available evidence on the relationship between the two forms of narcissism and PSMU conceptualized as a multidimensional phenomenon.

The protocol used to conduct this review is detailed below. Studies were included in the systematic literature review based on the following inclusion criteria: they must a quantitatively examine and report the relationship between grandiose narcissism, vulnerable narcissism or both, on the one hand, and problematic use of social media or specific social media platforms i. Moreover, the vast majority of the studies in the social media field has been conducted with non-clinical populations.

The search strategy was tested and refined prior to the formal search. More specifically, a search string or subject term related to narcissism was combined with a PSMU-related search string or subject term, using Boolean operators. No limits were added to the database searches. The search strategy was applied to each database, and the identified records were downloaded and merged into a single EndNote library.

Duplicate articles i. Two reviewers SC and VB checked the titles, abstracts, and full-texts of the initial search results independently. Those articles deemed ineligible by both reviewers based on their title and abstracts were excluded. The search selection process is detailed in Fig. A quality score out of 21 is then generated. It is worth noting that the tool allows each study to be assigned a score, but the interpretation of these scores is subjective. The quality score for each study identified by this systematic review is presented in Table 2 and Table 3 , and any additional comments on study quality are presented throughout the results.

The initial search yielded a total of documents. After the title and the abstract were doubled screened, 17 fit the inclusion criteria. Four additional papers were identified with a manual search of the reference list of the key studies. All the 21 articles were published between and , thus reflecting the recent and increasing scientific interest on this research topic.

Nineteen studies were cross-sectional and two were longitudinal. The grandiose form of narcissism was assessed in 18 out of the 21 studies whereas the vulnerable form of narcissism was assessed in six out of the 21 studies. Table 1 shows the measures used by the studies included in the review. Results concerning the association between grandiose narcissism and generalized PSMU appear to be inconsistent across the studies Table 2. Conversely, four studies did not find a significant correlation at the bivariate level, and one study did not find significant differences between GNs and non-narcissists in PSMU scores. More consistent results were found when research focused on PFU Table 3 in that all seven studies found significant positive correlations with narcissism, be it grandiose or vulnerable.

The aim of this review was to examine and critically appraise the existing quantitative research on narcissism and PSMU to increase our understanding of this relationship. First, two different trends emerged: some authors did not distinguish between different online media i. On the one hand, this might indicate a tendency to consider PFU as a distinct behaviour that deserves to be conceptualized and analyzed as a single construct Marino et al. On the other hand, it is not possible to rule out that some studies focused on FB simply because it was the only available online social network till some time ago and still is the most commonly used social networking online medium Statista, Consistent results were found regarding the positive and significant association between grandiose narcissism and PFU, and the only two studies that included a vulnerable narcissism measure reported a positive and significant correlation as well.

Conversely, studies investigating PSMU use as a unitary category i. This result implies that narcissism might not have consistent effects across social media platforms, and some key differences between the platforms might exist. For example, Twitter differs from Facebook in certain functional ways. Although this first systematic review makes important contributions to understanding the relations between the need to satisfy narcissistic needs and problematic use of online social platforms, there are limitations that need to be kept in mind. First, this review relied almost exclusively on concurrent associations.

Unfortunately, this research field is still dominated by cross-sectional studies, which hamper the possibility to establish the direction of the association between narcissism and PSMU. The only two studies that collected data at multiple points have reported that grandiose narcissism predicts PSMU Hawk et al. Longitudinal studies are especially needed in this field because it is impossible to rule out the possibility that problematic use of SNSs reinforces the very issues that led to its use in the first place Slater, , thereby helping to sustain those particular narcissistic needs and desired gratifications.

Although narcissism is often conceptualized as a stable trait, some researchers have suggested that narcissism and social media use are mutually reinforcing. Halpern, Valenzuela, and Katz , for example, conducted a cross-lagged analysis of a two-wave, panel survey in order to determine whether narcissists take selfies as an outlet for maintaining their positive self-views or whether selfies increase their levels of narcissism. Their findings point toward the presence of a self-reinforcement effect by which narcissism influences selfie production, which, in turn, increases the levels of narcissism reported by users over time.

Moreover, longitudinal investigations would be able to answer the question whether such relations tend to remain stable over time, or whether they change in strength in different life periods. Finally, it is noteworthy that only one study i. Future studies should pay more attention to clinical samples as well as to adolescents, since high-school students are the population more involved in online social platforms. Future research should also pay attention to potential moderators of the relationship bewteen the two forms of narcissism and PSMU.

Previous studies highlighted that online social media allow greater control over self-presentation, and this means that they might be particularly appealing for those narcissists who search for admiration by projecting a perfect image i. Beyond these limitations, the current findings have both theoretical and practical implications. From a theoretical point of view, they highlight one of the potential psychological risk factors for problematic use of online social platforms, particularly Fb. From the practical point of view, they highlight that it is important for clinicians and counselors to evaluate and address the needs that narcissists try to meet through the use of FB, in order to also reduce the behavioural symptoms of Fb addiction.

In fact, according to the already mentioned Uses and Gratifications different people can use the same medium for very different purposes. This might imply that treatments that focus on the behavioral dimensions of PSMU e. National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. Journal List Addict Behav Rep v. Addict Behav Rep. Published online Jan Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer. Silvia Casale: ti. This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Abstract Introduction The relationship between narcissism and social media use has been a topic of research since the advent of the first social media website. Results Consistent results were reported regarding the positive and significant association between grandiose narcissism and PFU 0.

Conclusions The results generally revealed that narcissism might be involved in PFU, but it might not have consistent effects across social media platforms. Introduction The use of social media has markedly increased over the past few years. Aims of the review To our knowledge, there is no systematic review on the association between the two forms of narcissism and PSMU. Eligibility criteria Studies were included in the systematic literature review based on the following inclusion criteria: they must a quantitatively examine and report the relationship between grandiose narcissism, vulnerable narcissism or both, on the one hand, and problematic use of social media or specific social media platforms i.

Study quality The search strategy was applied to each database, and the identified records were downloaded and merged into a single EndNote library. Open in a separate window. Multiple Regression analysis Controlling for gender and age, narcissism explained 7. Results 3.

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