5 reasons you might want to give up Facebook (other than privacy concerns)

Graphic/Global News

TORONTO – Facebook has had its fair share of privacy scandals over the past few years.

Just this week, a Harvard student made headlines for creating an app allowing users to see the location of their Facebook friends to within a metre – all to prove just how much location data Facebook Messenger shares.

And, while the social network has made a big push to help its users understand its privacy policy, every time a new story about Facebook privacy concerns makes headlines, people threaten to sign off for good.

But, despite concerns, Facebook remains one of the top social networks in the world – prompting lots of research into how the site affects our lives.

Turns out, there may be many reasons, other than privacy, to consider breaking up with Facebook.

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Facebook is making you feel bad about your life

There have been multiple studies that show how Facebook can negatively affect our mood.

Take research from the University of Gothenburg, for example. Researchers with the Swedish university found the more time users spend on Facebook, the more likely they are to feel unhappy with their own lives.

It’s making it harder to get over breakups

According to a 2012 study, seeing your ex on Facebook restricts both personal growth and emotional recovery.

Research released this week showed 88 per cent of Facebook users surveyed admitted to “creeping” their exes on the site. Those surveyed revealed they were guilty of looking through photos of their ex to see if they had moved on and reading into messages to find a hidden meaning.

Your status updates are making you look like a narcissist

Facebook feeds narcissism – at least that’s what British researchers found when they compared people’s Facebook posts to surveys that measure their personality traits.

Researchers at Brunel University found narcissists were more likely to post updates about their diet, physique and exercise routine.

Meanwhile, those who posted updates about their significant others showed they were grappling with low self-esteem.

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Social media can be an addiction

Researchers at the University at Albany found that social media – particularly Facebook – is not only addictive, but those who use it may also be at risk for greater impulse-control issues.

The study found roughly 10 per cent of users experience “disordered social media use,” meaning they exhibit addictive behaviors in the way they use platforms like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Your friends are stressing you out

If your Facebook news feed is chock-full of bad news from your friends, you are likely to feel more stressed out than usual.

A study released in January by Pew Research showed users who reported high levels of stress are indirectly affected by the awareness of stressful events in their online friends’ lives. In other words – stress is contagious.

With files from Global News’ Carmen Chai

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