Angela V. Galioto, Jennifer L. Hughes, and Chen Zuo,
Agnes Scott College
Full manuscript: www.kon.org/urc/v13/galioto.html
Abstract: Online social networking sites have become a way for individuals to keep in contact with others around the world, with Facebook being one of the most popular sites. Facebook allows individuals to express themselves through its features, one of which is the status update. The authors examined whether or not there was a relationship between the content and frequency of Facebook users’ status posts and their happiness. The researchers had three hypotheses: (a) users who reported more happiness would have more positive posts, (b) younger users would post more frequently and post more negative content, (c) women would post more frequently and post more negative content as compared to men, and (d) frequent posts would contain more negative content. The study included 412 participants of which 89 percent were female. The participants completed an online survey, giving their three most recent status posts, and they completed a happiness scale. A positive correlation between age and happiness was found, men posted more frequently than women, and a negative relationship between frequency of status posts and positive content was found. This study adds to the literature on Facebook and users’ happiness. For future studies researchers should measure both personality and life satisfaction along with the content of Facebook posts.