Are Facebook and Twitter really more addictive than alcohol and tobacco?

You’ll probably be reading about this soon all over Facebook and Twitter. Social media users are at greater risk of becoming addicted to Facebook and Twitter than cigarettes and alcohol, if a new study from the University of Chicago’s Booth School

of Business is correct.

The one-week study polled

205 people in Germany via Blackberry smartphones 7 times per day to ask if they had experienced a desire to use a social network within the past thirty minutes, and whether they had given in to that desire. They were also

asked to rate the desires from “mild” to “irresistible.” Out of the 10,558 responses, a total of 7,827 “desire episodes” were reported by participants.

The results of the study will soon be published in the Psychological Science journal. Preliminary results of the study were released to The Guardian. The Guardian says the researchers “even claim that while sleep and sex may be stronger urges, people are more likely to give in to longings or cravings to use social and other media.”

This writer doesn’t doubt that social media can be addictive. But the scientists who designed and ran the study appear to be making some pretty strong claims based on nothing more than a one-week survey of 205 Blackberry users

in Germany.

Be Sociable, Share!