The relationship between addictive use of social media, narcissism, and self-esteem: findings from a large national survey

Andreassen, CS, Pallesen, S and Griffiths, MD ORCID: 0000-0001-8880-6524, 2017. The relationship between addictive use of social media, narcissism, and self-esteem: findings from a large national survey. Addictive Behaviors, 64, pp. 287-293. ISSN 0306-4603

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Social media has become an increasingly popular leisure activity over the last decade. Although most people’s social media use is non-problematic, a small number of users appear to engage in social media excessively and/or compulsively. The main objective of this study was to examine the associations between addictive use of social media, narcissism, and self esteem. A cross-sectional convenient sample of 23,532 Norwegians (Mage=35.8 years; range=16-88 years) completed an open web-based survey including the Bergen Social Media Addiction Scale (BSMAS), the Narcissistic Personality Inventory-16, and the Rosenberg Self Esteem Scale. Results demonstrated that lower age, being female, being single, being a student, lower education, lower income, lower self-esteem, and narcissism were associated with higher scores on the BSMAS, explaining a total of 17.5% of the variance. Although most effect sizes were relatively modest, the findings supported the notion of addictive social media use reflecting a need to feed the ego (i.e., narcissistic personality traits) and an attempt to inhibit a negative self-concept (i.e., basic cognitions). The results were also consistent with demographic predictions and associations taken from central theories concerning “addiction”, indicating that females may tend to develop more addictive use of activities involving social interaction than males. However, the cross-sectional study design makes inferences about directionality impossible.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Addictive Behaviors
Creators: Andreassen, C.S., Pallesen, S. and Griffiths, M.D.
Publisher: Elsevier
Date: January 2017
Volume: 64
ISSN: 0306-4603
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Depositing User: Jill Tomkinson
Date Added: 05 Apr 2016 15:04
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2017 14:00

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