Study: Is Facebook more addictive than alcohol or cigarettes? - Toledo News Now, News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Study: Is Facebook more addictive than alcohol or cigarettes?

© Image courtesy of Digital Trends © Image courtesy of Digital Trends


By Mike Flacy
Provided by

According to a new study out of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, the desire to check a social network like Twitter or Facebook is stronger than the need to smoke a cigarette or have an alcoholic beverage. As reported by The Guardian, test subjects between the ages of 18 to 85 were armed with BlackBerry smartphones and asked to send messages seven times a day related to recent desires. Splitting the messages up over 14 hours a day covering an entire week,  respondents were asked to list any desire felt in the last 30 minutes and describe the level of strength of that desire. The 205 participants were also asked to describe how it interfered with other desires and if the desire was resisted.

After collecting over 10,000 responses from the group, approximately three fourths were related to some type of desire. Sexual activity and sleep ranked at the top of the desire list, but checking social networks and attempting to avoid work were very close behind.

However, respondents were able to resist the majority of sexual and spending impulses. In addition, addictive vices such as caffeine, tobacco and alcohol were much lower on the overall list of desires. Researchers also discovered that the ability to resist certain desires is much stronger at the start of the day and participants were more likely to give into a desire if they continually attempted to resist it throughout the day.

According to Wilhelm Hofmann, the University's assistant professor of behavioral science, he stated "Resisting the desire to work was likewise prone to fail. In contrast, people were relatively successful at resisting sports inclinations, sexual urges, and spending impulses, which seems surprising given the salience in modern culture of disastrous failures to control sexual impulses and urges to spend money."

Specifically regarding social media, he went on to say "The fact sleep and leisure were the most problematic desires suggests pervasive tension between natural inclinations to rest and relax and the multitude of work and other obligations. Desires for media may be comparatively harder to resist because of their high availability and also because it feels like it does not ‘cost much' to engage in these activities, even though one wants to resist."

The study has been submitted to Psychological Science and is scheduled to be published in the journal soon. Another recent study out of Utah Valley University explored the possibility that Facebook is making people sad due to the high amount of happy pictures and status updates found on the social network.

This article was originally posted on Digital Trends

In Case You Missed It:

NFL using "social media command center" to manage Super Bowl chatter
UMass social media study highlights shift in how companies converse with consumers
Comcast patent reveals social TV plans
Minority Report is real: FBI wants to use social networks to prevent future crime

Content provided by
INFORMATIONAL DISCLAIMER The information contained on or provided through this site is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional financial or accounting advice. Always seek the advice of your accountant or other qualified personal finance advisor for answers to any related questions you may have. Use of this site and any information contained on or provided through this site is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
  • Headlines from Lucas, Wood, Ottawa, Fulton & Monroe CountiesNewsMore>>

  • Toledo's third-annual Turkey Chase draws record-breaking crowd

    Toledo's third-annual Turkey Chase draws record-breaking crowd

    Thursday, November 23 2017 3:46 PM EST2017-11-23 20:46:36 GMT
    (Source: WTOL)(Source: WTOL)

    A record-breaking 3,095 people joined in the race for a good cause. 

    More >>

    A record-breaking 3,095 people joined in the race for a good cause. 

    More >>
  • Sylvania police find missing adult

    Sylvania police find missing adult

    Thursday, November 23 2017 1:09 PM EST2017-11-23 18:09:52 GMT

    Sylvania police are searching for a man who has been missing since Wednesday. Police say 82-year-old Charles Fackelman was last seen at the VFW Post 2898 on west Alexis Road in Toledo around 8 p.m. Fackelman is described as a white male standing at five feet five inches and weighing 158 pounds with gray hair and blue eyes. Police say he was seen leaving the VFW in a black and white cab. Police say Fackelman suffers from dementia.  Anyone with information should call 911.&nbs...

    More >>

    Sylvania police are searching for a man who has been missing since Wednesday. Police say 82-year-old Charles Fackelman was last seen at the VFW Post 2898 on west Alexis Road in Toledo around 8 p.m. Fackelman is described as a white male standing at five feet five inches and weighing 158 pounds with gray hair and blue eyes. Police say he was seen leaving the VFW in a black and white cab. Police say Fackelman suffers from dementia.  Anyone with information should call 911.&nbs...

    More >>
  • Cherry Street's mission is to serve the needy on Thanksgiving

    Cherry Street's mission is to serve the needy on Thanksgiving

    Thursday, November 23 2017 11:41 AM EST2017-11-23 16:41:08 GMT
    (Source: Cherry Street Mission Ministries)(Source: Cherry Street Mission Ministries)

    The mission is teaming with the Real Seafood Company and its owner Mike Gibbons for the eighth year in a row to not only hand out meals in house, but also deliver them to a thousand homes in the area. 

    More >>

    The mission is teaming with the Real Seafood Company and its owner Mike Gibbons for the eighth year in a row to not only hand out meals in house, but also deliver them to a thousand homes in the area. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly