Feb 082012
 

Using Facebook changes your pupil dilation, breathing, pulse rate and  puts you in a flow state according to new Italian research. While you’re looking at your Facebook pages you’re likely to be in a Core Flow State – with high positive valence and high arousal, the researchers found.

Measurements of physical and psychological responses such as breathing rate, brain activation, and pupil dilation, designed to assess a person’s psychophysiological state, were collected in a group of individuals participating in either a relaxing or stressful task or being online on their own personal Facebook account. The results revealed a significantly different experience for stress or relaxation exposure compared to the response to Facebook.

People visit social networking sites such as Facebook for many reasons, including the positive emotional experience that people enjoy and want to repeat, according to an article in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, a peer-reviewed journal published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

Maurizio Mauri, PhD, Pietro Cipresso, PhD, Anna Balgera, MA, Marco Villamira, PhD, MD, and Giuseppe Riva, PhD, from IULM University, Auxologico Italian Institute, and Catholic University of Sacro Cuore, in Milan, Italy, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, report the design, findings, and conclusions of this study in the article entitled, “Why Is Facebook so Successful? Psychophysiological Measures Describe a Core Flow State while Using Facebook.” http://online.liebertpub.com/doi/abs/10.1089/cyber.2010.0377

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