A new research has suggested that users who spend over three hours a day on Facebook are more likely to share their personal information as compared to those who spend lesser time on the social networking platform. The research further reveals that heavy social media users become habitual of posting information about themselves, without worrying about privacy. This happens mainly because they read daily about their friends and the world, which in turn prompts them to post more about themselves, and even share more online as compared to offline meetings, according to the study. Also Read - Facebook smartwatch to feature cameras alongside fitness functions: Yes, detachable cameras!Also Read - What happens to your Facebook account after you die?
“People sometimes don’t realize the powerful socializing role of social media,” said Mina Tsay-Vogel, Assistant Professor at Boston University in the US. “Yes, we are maintaining relationships with others, and we might all get to know the most current news and what people are doing, and it’s very satiating. But we might not realize that it’s also affecting how we’re seeing information disclosure in the real world, and how it’s also impacting us to then disclose our own personal information. Not only in the virtual world, but in the off-line world,” she further said.
The study, published in the journal New Media and Society, analysed five years’ worth of surveys from 2,789 students (18-to-25-year-old) in the US. Researchers surveyed students in introductory communications courses between 2010 and 2015, asking them about their Facebook habits and their attitudes toward privacy and government regulation in order to discern patterns in their behaviour and attitudes about sharing information on Facebook. ALSO READ: Facebook study shows cat lovers are more likely to be single, have fewer friends
This multiyear look at the same age group gave researchers more insights into users’ attitudes than a one-time snapshot, Tsay-Vogel said. The data showed that heavier users of Facebook, defined as being on a social network for more than the sample average of 3.17 hours a day, had more relaxed privacy attitudes and were more likely to share personal information, Tsay-Vogel said.