Sample Literature Review On The Social Media Effect: Impact On Self-Esteem And Life Satisfaction

Type of paper: Literature Review

Topic: Sociology, Self-Esteem, Study, Internet, Media, Life, Facebook, Satisfaction

Pages: 8

Words: 2200

Published: 2021/01/08

Research Question

This literature review will consider the question of how the use of social media affects ones self-esteem and overall life satisfaction. Based off of this research question, the literature review will explore the hypothesis that social media can have both positive and negative impacts on self-esteem and life satisfaction. The idea is that social networking sites provide additional support to improve self-esteem and life satisfaction in most cases, and social media serves as an extra form of support to those who otherwise may be anti-social in face-to-face communications (Cheung & Lee, 2014). Furthermore, the more people use social media, the more that they report higher self-esteem and life satisfaction (Cheung & Lee, 2014).

Introduction

This literature review focuses on the impact of social media on self-esteem and life satisfaction. It aims to discuss how different social and psychological factors impact the use of social media, thus impacting a person’s self-esteem and overall life satisfaction in both negative and positive ways. Pre-existing psychological factors such as anxiety and depression can influence use of social media (Caplan 2007). For example, a person suffering from these conditions can find positive social support, which allows an increase in self-esteem, by connecting to other people through social media (Shaw & Gant, 2002). On the opposite end of the argument, those same people suffering from depression may find themselves victim of cyberbullying, thereby influencing them to make negative life decisions (Dehue, Bolman, & Vollink, 2008). Social media use also exposes users to upward comparison, which negatively influences self-esteem (Valenzuela, Park, & Kee, 2009). The articles in this literature review all involve studies reporting the impact of social media on self-esteem and life satisfaction.

Literature Review

Cheung, C.M.K., & Lee Z.W.Y. (2014). Problematic use of social networking sites: The role of self-esteem. International Journal of Business & Information, 9(2), 143-159.
This study aimed to discover whether problematic social media use, or social media addiction, was a result of individuals with low self-esteem preferring online interaction over face-to-face interaction. Researchers hypothesized that people with low self-esteem lack skill in face-to-face social communication, so when they find ease in online communication, they have difficulty regulating the use of social media (Cheung & Lee, 2014). Using an online survey, the study posted invitation links to the popular social networking site Facebook and obtained data from 212 Facebook users on Internet use and self-esteem (Cheung & Lee, 2014). The survey included questions regarding personal use of Facebook, negative consequences of overusing social media, preference for social interaction, and self-esteem information (Cheung & Lee, 2014).
Participants were roughly equal in gender and 87.5% were aged 16-25 (Cheung & Lee, 2014). Results showed that self-esteem has a direct influence on the preference for online social interaction, leading to the use of social networking for mood regulation and the lack of self-regulation of social networking use (Cheung & Lee, 2014). While the research reached an important section of social media users, the study was limited based on its sole use of one social media platform (Facebook) and its overwhelming percentage of users aged 16-25. Many social media users are outside of this age range. Furthermore, the study relied solely on self-reporting rather than objective data. Future studies need to combine self-reporting and objective research, broaden social media platforms used, and research a wider age group.
Ellison, N.B., Steinfield, C., & Lampe, C. (2007). The benefits of facebook “friends:” Social capital and college students’ use of online social network sites. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 12(4), 1143-1168.
This study aimed to show a link between Facebook use and social capital, then compare how social bonding and bridging social capital varies with self-esteem and life satisfaction. Bonding capital is formed between people with close, emotionally-tied relationships, while bridging capital is formed through weak social connections based on common interests or acquaintances (Ellison, Steinfield, & Lampe, 2007). According to the study, people with low self-esteem or low life satisfaction have less bonding and bridging capital because they have fewer strong and weak relationships (Ellison, Steinfield, & Lampe, 2007). Researchers also coined the phrase “maintained social capital” to measure how the Internet enables people to stay connected despite moving, for instance high school friends keeping in touch via social media (Ellison, Steinfield, & Lampe, 2007). The hypothesis of the study sought to measure how the intensity of Facebook use increased the three types of capital and how increased self-esteem and life satisfaction increased with Facebook use.
Researchers sent an invitation to a random sample of 800 Michigan State University undergraduate students via email and received 286 responses to their survey questions regarding demographic information, Internet use, Facebook use, and other variable information (Ellison, Steinfield, & Lampe, 2007). The study also asked dfor dependent variables of subjective well-being and the three social capital measures (Ellison, Steinfield, & Lampe, 2007). Using a Facebook intensity scale, subjective perceptions of Facebook page views, Facebook page purpose responses and measurements of self-esteem, life satisfaction, and social capital, researchers used regression analysis to test each element of the hypothesis (Ellison, Steinfield, & Lampe, 2007).
Results were conclusive, but they are limited in that lack the ability to give specific answers regarding causation. According to Ellison, Steinfield, and Lampe, there is a definite positive relationship among Facebook usage, self-esteem, life satisfaction, and social capital; however, the study’s results are limited because it cannot show whether the relationship is caused by Facebook use or not (2007). The results did, however, show that Facebook users do use the social media platform for maintained social capital and proves that Facebook provides an offline to online relationship previously thought to only occur in the opposite direction, online to offline (Ellison, Steinfield, & Lampe, 2007). Furthermore, there is a direct positive relationship between increased Facebook use and increased self-esteem and life satisfaction (Ellison, Steinfield, & Lampe, 2007). Future research may need to limit the scope of the study to first find a relationship between Facebook use and social capital because including so many variables failed to give clear relationships in some aspects of the study.
Oh, H.J, Ozkaya, E., & LaRose, R. (2014). How does online social networking enhance life satisfaction? The relationships among online supportive interaction, affect, perceived social support, sense of community, and life satisfaction. Computers in Human Behavior, 30, 69-78.
The study sought to discern how social media use results in positive psychological outcomes. The study aimed to measure whether increased friends on social networking sites results in increased supportive interaction as well as whether increased social networking use increases the amount of supportive interaction. Furthermore, the study aimed to find how this supportive interaction affected users after the fact and whether this interaction resulted in increased self-esteem and life satisfaction. Researchers used momentary sampling technique with a diary survey booklet to allow 339 participants selected via snowball sampling to record their feelings and behaviors surrounding social media use (Oh, Ozkaya, & LaRose, 2014). Variables included the number of social networking friends, frequency of use, social support, and life satisfaction (Oh, Ozkaya, & LaRose, 2014). Researchers used both a path model ad multilevel model to produce results for the wide range of variables (Oh, Ozkaya, & LaRose, 2014).
Results of the study showed that although there was no direct effect on positive outcomes based on the number of friends on a social networking site, the amount of time spent in positive, supportive interactions positively influences perceived support and life satisfaction (Oh, Ozkaya, & LaRose, 2014). While the study does provide information to support social media use as a mechanism for positive psychological outcomes, it is limited as it fails to show how the different types of support via social media influence self-esteem and life satisfaction (Oh, Ozkaya, & LaRose, 2014). To overcome this limitation, future studies need to measure how companionship, appraisal, and esteem support differ in their positive influence on life satisfaction (Oh, Ozkaya, & LaRose, 2014). Furthermore, future studies should measure the inverse of this social media influence to see how it may negatively influence life satisfaction.
Valenzuela, S., Park, N., & Kee, K.F. (2009). Is there social capital in a social network site?: Facebook use and college students’ life satisfaction, trust, and participation. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 14(4), 875-901.
Two studies were conducted in this work, both involving social media users self-esteem in upward comparison to other social media profiles. The first study sought to see whether social media users exposed to upward social comparisons had lower self-esteem (Valenzuela, Park, & Kee, 2009). Using 145 college student participants, researchers collected data through computer-based questionnaires to obtain information on Facebook use, how participants compared themselves to other users, and subjectively measured self-esteem (Valenzuela, Park, & Kee, 2009). Results showed that increased Facebook use resulted in increased upward social comparisons and a decrease in self-esteem (Valenzuela, Park, & Kee, 2009). The study was limited, however, because it focused solely on upward and downward comparisons. Future studies should consider a long-term, real-life comparison using a momentary model to provide results where participants are recording current Facebook use, comparisons, and self-esteem. Furthermore, researchers should consider that users with low self-esteem may use Facebook more frequently and skew results.
The second study aimed to find whether short-term exposure to upward comparison resulted in low self-esteem and whether the results were influenced by certain variables (Valenzuela, Park, & Kee, 2009). Using 128 undergraduate students, researchers showed 4 fictitious profiles, two for upward comparison and two for downward comparison, and then surveyed the participants’ view of the profiles and their self-esteem after viewing the profiles (Valenzuela, Park, & Kee, 2009). Important variables that influenced the results were high social network activity and personal characteristics (Valenzuela, Park, & Kee, 2009). Results showed that upward comparison did influence self-esteem but downward comparison did not (Valenzuela, Park, & Kee, 2009). One limitation of the study was the lack of comparison of unknown profiles with profiles from a personal social circle to compare the difference in how known versus unknown profiles influence self-esteem. The study mentioned the use of unknown profiles, but there was no solid way to compare the difference in exposures. For instance, future studies should measure the difference in self-esteem when having viewed familiar upward profiles and unfamiliar upward profiles to see if there is an impact because most users view profiles of people familiar to them whether by acquaintance, history, etc.
Vogel, E.A., Rose, J.P., Roberts, L.R., & Eckles, K. (2014). Social comparison, social media and self-esteem. Psychology of Popular Media Culture, 3(4), 206-222.
This study aims to measure the influence of Facebook use on social capital, particularly in an effort to see how its use could benefit democratic citizenship and involvement in civic duties (Vogel, Rose, Roberts, & Eckles, 2014). According to the study, young people have been declining in civic participation, so it is important to figure out if social media could positively influence their decision to participate is civic activities through social capital (Vogel, Rose, Roberts, & Eckles, 2014). The study hypothesizes that intensity of Facebook use and participation in Facebook groups positively influences life satisfaction, social trust, civic participation, and political participation (Vogel, Rose, Roberts, & Eckles, 2014). Sampling 2,603 college-aged individuals from Texas, researchers created an 85 question survey that had participants answer questions regarding life satisfaction, social trust, civic participation, Facebook use, and Facebook group use (Vogel, Rose, Roberts, & Eckles, 2014).

Summary

The studies show that, overall, social media has a positive impact on the self-esteem and life satisfaction of higher intensity users. It appears that users suffering from low self-esteem and low life satisfaction gain from online interactions because, in general, they shy away from face-to-face communication and social networks give them a safe way to interact socially (Cheung & Lee, 2014). Likewise, high intensity Facebook users in general seem to benefit from positive social interaction on the Internet. Social network use also encourages people to have an increased social trust and to increase their civic participation; moreover, when using social network groups, people are more likely to increase political participation (Vogel, Rose, Roberts, & Eckles, 2014). Overall, social network seems to have a positive impact on individuals.
On the other hand, the studies mostly focus on the positive use of social networks. The studies are limited in their view of the negative impact of social networks. Studies show that just as they can have a positive impact when used in a supportive manner, people can have negative experiences on social media that negatively impact their self-esteem and life satisfaction (Valkenburg, Peter, & Schouten, 2006). Particularly, adolescents are likely to experience bullying and negativity on social media sites that is harmful to their psychological health (Valkenburg, Peter, & Schouten, 2006). Further research needs to be completed on the relationship between cyberbulling and self-esteem.
Overall, the studies do have many benefits. They show how social networks can have a positive influence on individuals, which may help promote new ideas for reaching at risk youth and young adults. They expose many issues that social workers may utilize when working with individuals and families to improve their quality of life. Social work research such as this may also help develop policies and programs that benefit society and encourage more civic participation to positively influence their communities and organizations. All of the articles suggest that, when used in a supportive manner, social networks are beneficial to both self-esteem and life satisfaction.

References

Caplan, S. E. (2007). Relations among loneliness, social anxiety, and problematic internet use. CyberPsychology & Behavior, 10(2), 234-242.
Cheung, C.M.K., & Lee Z.W.Y. (2014). Problematic use of social networking sites: The role of self-esteem. International Journal of Business & Information, 9(2), 143-159.
Dehue, F., Bolman, C., & Vollink, T. Cyberbulling: Youngsters’ experiences and parental perception. CyberPsychology & Behavior, 11(2), 217-223.
Ellison, N.B., Steinfield, C., & Lampe, C. (2007). The benefits of facebook “friends:” Social capital and college students’ use of online social network sites. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 12(4), 1143-1168.
Oh, H.J, Ozkaya, E., & LaRose, R. (2014). How does online social networking enhance life satisfaction? The relationships among online supportive interaction, affect, perceived social support, sense of community, and life satisfaction. Computers in Human Behavior, 30, 69-78.
Shaw, L.H., & Gant, L.M. (2002). In defense of the internet: The relationship between internet communication and depression, loneliness, self-esteem, and perceived social support. CyberPsychology & Behavior, 5(2), 157-171.
Valenzuela, S., Park, N., & Kee, K.F. (2009). Is there social capital in a social network site?: Facebook use and college students’ life satisfaction, trust, and participation. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 14(4), 875-901.
Valkeburg, P.M., Peter, J., & Schouten, A.P. Friend networking sites and their relationship with adolescents’ well-being and social self-esteem. CyberPsychology & Behavior, 9(5), 584-590.
Vogel, E.A., Rose, J.P., Roberts, L.R., & Eckles, K. (2014). Social comparison, social media and self-esteem. Psychology of Popular Media Culture, 3(4), 206-222.

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WePapers. (2021, January, 08) Sample Literature Review On The Social Media Effect: Impact On Self-Esteem And Life Satisfaction. Retrieved April 17, 2021, from https://www.wepapers.com/samples/sample-literature-review-on-the-social-media-effect-impact-on-self-esteem-and-life-satisfaction/
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