Saurashtra University’s (SU) random study on behavioural patterns among young people showed that unspoken ‘feelings’ mostly reflected on their status — be it anger, frustration, anticipation, or even love and joy – it proved to be a mirror to the users’ minds.
So much so, that status in virtual reality and status in real life are almost on the same platform, says the study, which reveals that statuses are updated to reflect the three most common emotions — attract, impress, or simply create jealousy.
The varsity studied 1,080 people, mostly youngsters, who lived off their cellphones, literally. The study conducted by the department’s assistant professor Dimple Ramani and student Payal Parmar found that extensive use of mobile phones left young people lonely and thus, cut off normal society they expressed their inner feelings through social media status.
Young people between 15 and 45 use this feature as an announcement of their mental makeup for the world to understand. These statuses can be interesting, eye-opening and even reflect the changing social structure.
While the survey shows 90 per cent upload social media statuses to impress and attract others, an equal amount use it to either vilify others or instil jealousy by updating their own achievements.
Almost 73 per cent of respondents admitted that they update their status daily without fail, even as 60 per cent said that they use the feature only to showcase their impulse regarding love.
However, 25 per cent also use this medium to vent their frustration or express guilt and self-pity, while 27 per cent said that they express anger and aggression through status updates.
According to the surveyor, this anger and aggression could be from the current political situation, personal or general economic situation, geo-political or religious and social issues among many other aspects.
The survey also found that a sizeable 54 per cent prefer to keep their thoughts, feeling guarded under privacy settings, while almost 88.1 per cent of the younger respondents stated they use advanced versions of apps like GB WhatsApp, FM WhatsApp, InstaPro etc that provide them extra features like more security, more privacy, hiding last seen, delivery report to name a few.
“In short we found that 85.5 per cent of respondents express their feelings through statuses. There is nothing wrong in updating social media status, but there is also a downside too. It’s dangerously becoming part of normal life and excessive use of mobile creates psychological issues including loneliness and anxiety,” Ramani said, adding that people need to communicate with others and express feelings openly rather than hide behind their mobiles.