Publication Date

2013

Abstract

Previous research has identified the importance of social connectedness in facilitating a number of positive outcomes, however, investigation of connectedness in online contexts is relatively novel. This research aimed to investigate for the first time social connectedness derived from the use of Facebook. Study 1 investigated whether offline social connectedness and Facebook connectedness were separate constructs. Participants were Facebook users (N = 344) who completed measures of offline social connectedness and Facebook social connectedness. Factor analysis (Maximum Likelihood analysis with Oblimin rotation) revealed Facebook connectedness to be distinct from offline social connectedness. Study 2 examined the relationship between Facebook social connectedness and anxiety, depression, and subjective well-being in a second sample of Facebook users (N = 274) in a cross-sectional design. Results suggest that Facebook use may provide the opportunity to develop and maintain social connectedness in the online environment, and that Facebook connectedness is associated with lower depression and anxiety and greater satisfaction with life. Limitations and future directions are considered. It is concluded that Facebook may act as a separate social medium in which to develop and maintain relationships, providing an alternative social outlet associated with a range of positive psychological outcomes.

Document Type

Journal Article

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