Why can’t people stay away from Facebook for long? We all know that one Facebook-friend (or, we might even be one ourselves!) who deletes or deactivates his account, swearing to never return, but ultimately finds himself drawn back to the online social network. Why is that?! A new study published in Social Media + Society suggests 4 factors that will significantly influence the chance of someone logging back onto Facebook.
The study researchers coined a term for the ‘phenomenon’ of leaving social media only to return to it later: social media reversion.
The findings are said to illustrate how complex the decisions made concerning social media can be due to the combination of reasons motivating them to use or not to use the social media.
The researchers made use of data obtained from a survey led by 99daysoffreedom.com which is an online campaign meant to promote staying off Facebook for 99 days. The focus of the authors was mainly on those participants who initially said they would abide by the ‘challenge’ but who, in spite of it all, returned to the social media.
Following the analysis of this information, the researchers came up with 4 reasons behind social media reversion:-
1. Perceived addiction
People who considered Facebook to be addictive or who thought of it as a habit were more likely to return. It is something that the Facebook users are used to when surfing on the Internet, and they would find themselves inclined to open a tab for Facebook.
2. Privacy issues
Those who were of the opinion that their activities on Facebook were monitored were less likely to return. On the other hand, those who would use Facebook for the sake of what others think of them had a greater chance of returning.
3. Other social media accounts
Users having other social media accounts like Twitter were less likely to come back.
Being in a good mood made it less likely to come back. Next time you deactivate but find yourself going back on your word, blame your mood! Or, fix your mood!
Also, those who would consider the appropriate uses of technology in their lives would, on one hand, be more likely to return, but on the other, to alter the way they use it, such as unfriending some people, or limiting the amount of time spent.
In other cases, Facebook was seen as the only means to connect with certain groups of people.