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Sobkin V.S., Fedotova A.V. (2018) Adolescent in social networks: on the issue of social psychological well-being. National Psychological Journal. 3, 23-36.

Abstract

Background. Digital technologies have long become an integral part of everyday life. Internet and Social Networking Sites (SNS) are considered to be one of the socialization institutions along with traditional school and family.

Objective. The research is concerned with studying the peculiarities of teenagers’ social psychological well-being when using SNS. The analysis aims at revealing the impact of demographic, social stratifying and social psychological factors on the type of adolescent self-performance at SNS, their attitude towards regulations of interaction at SNS, their concern about potential risks and also opinions about the effects of SNS socialization on their personality.

Design. The paper is based on the results of 2074 school-aged adolescent survey conducted in 2016 in Moscow region, Russia.

Results. According to the survey, the adolescent well-being when using SNS depends on the type of their self-presentation. The data showed that affective significance of social networking for adolescents who seek the attention of the strangers produces a negative impact on their emotional well-being: those who refer to their SNS profile as “provocative” are more likely to feel the “addiction to virtual interaction and other’s opinions” – 17.4% (mean 7.1%; p≤ .0004), being disturbed by “more popular profiles” – 21,7% (mean 4.2%; p≤ .00001).

Conclusion. The survey showed that nowadays adolescents deem the SNS as the most important communicative field where the fundamental age-related changes take plaare foundce. The tendency to expand social contacts by means of virtual communication was found to produce negative impact on adolescent personal development and social interaction in real life.

Received: 04/12/2018
Accepted: 05/07/2018
Pages: 23-36
DOI: 10.11621/npj.2018.0303

Sections: Psychology of virtual reality;

PDF:

Keywords: social networks; SNS performance; adolescence; self-presentation; regulations; Internet addiction; social status; social psychological well-being;

Available Online 30.09.2018


Fig. 1. Different target settings in adolescents when creating a profile in a social network with different status in the class (%)


Fig. 2. Differences in the evaluation of one’s web page in a social network depending on the communicative goal (%)


Fig. 3. Age dynamics of network communication risks (%)


Fig. 4. Evaluation of one’s own emotional state by adolescents with long-term inability to use the social network depending on frequency of using social network (%)


Fig. 5. Experiences of adolescents with long-term inability to use the social network depending on the assessment of their life prospects


Fig. 6. Attitude of adolescents with different self-assessment values of their status in the class to the consequences of using social networks (%)

Table. 1. General distribution and age-related dynamics of student responses to the question of the importance of restrictive regulations of communication in the network (%)

mean

5th form

7th form

9th form

11th form

Information showing disrespect and disregard for other users and their interests, or
point of view

36.1

35.2

37.2

34.7

38.0

personal insults to other users

49.5

53.1

50.6

49.7

40.0

Erotic information from the user's personal life

41.3

37.5

43.1

42.5

42.3

Content of aggressive nature. including unprintable speech and bullying other network users

33.2

32.0

33.4

32.7

36.0

Showing disrespect to religious issues

25.5

23.6

23.7

28.1

27.3

Showing disrespect to national issues

25.6

21.2

24.6

27.5

32.3

Showing disrespect to the state

25.3

26.4

25.6

24.6

23.7

Only the content that contradicts the rules of social network administration

13.2

10.5

11.3

15.6

17.3

only the content that entails legal liability

15.8

10.7

12.9

19.8

23.3

N

2074

571

613

590

300

Table 2. Attitude of adolescents to personal changes that occurred under the influence of the network depending on frequency of using social network (%)

mean

Less than 1 hr

More than 5 hrs

p

I became more confident in real communication with my peers

36.0

33.5

46.7

.0002

I became more popular among my peers

17.6

12.7

25.9

.00001

My circle of communication expanded significantly

37.9

31.5

49.6

.00001

I learned more about majors I take interest in

30.0

30.9

28.5

I improved my academic performance

10.0

11.0

11.5

I began to feel more mature

18.2

16.4

30.4

.00001

I have acquired new interests

41.7

38.0

47.8

.005

I began to communicate with "virtual" friends than with real ones more often

7.7

4.7

19.6

.00001

Conflicts in my family increased

5.4

4.2

8.5

.003

My academic performance decreased

6.2

6.2

11.5

.002

My interest in current hobbies decreased

4.0

2.6

7.4

I became more closed in communicating with classmates and acquaintances

3.7

3.6

7.0

.05

N

2074

645

270

 

Table 3. Fixing adolescent consequences of network communication depending on attitude to their webpage (%).

average

reserved

explicit

provocative

I became more popular among my peers

17.2

21.4

38.8

29.3

I began to feel more mature

17.9

22.8

43.7

41.3

I began to communicate with "virtual" friends  than with real ones  more often

7.1

7.9

25.2

23.9

Conflicts in my family increased

5.2

7.3

18.4

21.7

My academic performance decreased

6.4

7.5

15.5

18.5

I became more closed in communicating with classmates and acquaintances

3.5

5.3

13.6

13.0

N

1416

509

103

92

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For citing this article:

Sobkin V.S., Fedotova A.V. (2018) Adolescent in social networks: on the issue of social psychological well-being. National Psychological Journal. 3, 23-36.

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