Staying Off Facebook Brings Benefits: Study

Turning away from Facebook could benefit you in a number of ways, according to a new study.

You'd have more in-person time with family and friends, be less politically partisan, have a slight improvement in daily moods and life satisfaction, and have an extra hour a day of downtime if you're an average Facebook user, The New York Times reported.

One downside among those who stopped using Facebook was a decrease in political knowledge.

The Stanford University and New York University-led study included nearly 3,000 Facebook users over age 18 who spent at least 15 minutes on the platform each day. The daily average was an hour, but two to three hours or more for heavy users.

Half were asked to deactivate their Facebook accounts for a month, in exchange for payment. On average, the amount was about $100, The Times reported.

The study, posted recently on the open access site Social Science Research Network, has not yet undergone peer review.

"This is one study of many on this topic, and it should be considered that way," a Facebook press officer said in a prepared statement, The Times reported.

In quoting from the study itself, the statement said ""Facebook produces large benefits for its users," and that "any discussion of social media's downsides should not obscure the fact that it fulfills deep and widespread needs."

There are about 2.3 billion Facebook users worldwide.

MedicalNews
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