WTF Fun Fact 13487 – Happy Couples Post Less on Social Media

We’re all familiar with that couple who constantly posts pictures of their romantic getaways, perfect dinners, and seemingly idyllic moments – but a study showed that happy couples post less on social media.

It appears that couples who frequently share selfies and other relationship-related content on social media platforms aren’t living quite the life they claim to be. Go figure.

The Study and Its Findings

An online photography platform, Shotkit, conducted an intriguing study involving over 2,000 individuals aged between 18 to 50. The participants were asked to rate their relationship’s overall happiness, intimacy, communication, and trust. They were also asked about their frequency of sharing relationship-related content on social media.

The study revealed that couples who posted three or more selfies per week were, on average, 128% less happy compared to those who refrained from broadcasting their relationship on the internet. In fact, only 10% of frequent social media sharers categorized themselves as “very happy.”

In contrast, nearly half (46%) of those who don’t publicize their relationships online perceived themselves as happier. The unhappiest group was couples who posted more than three times a week, with merely 32% classifying their relationship as “happy” or “very happy.”

Reasons Happy Couples Post Less on Social Media

This study’s findings hint at potential underlying issues. One compelling inference is that trust issues could be prompting couples to post more frequently on social media. The main reason identified for couples sharing their relationship online was to signify that they or their partner were ‘taken.’

Interestingly, the top three reasons why couples refrained from sharing their relationships online were: “privacy,” “embarrassment,” and being “not regular social media users.”

Of course, not all social media sharing is detrimental but hinted at the danger of overdoing it.

The results suggest a potent social media paradox. In a world where social platforms allow us to share our lives with a broader audience, we might unknowingly be sacrificing the intimacy and privacy that nourish a truly fulfilling relationship.

 WTF fun facts

Source: “Happy Couples Post Their Partner Less on Social Media” — Relevant

WTF Fun Fact 13393 – The First Social Media Platform

The first social media platform, Six Degrees, was launched in 1997. It allowed users to create profiles and connect with friends, similar to modern social networks.

Building the first social media platform

Andrew Weinreich developed Six Degrees and took it live in 1997. This groundbreaking platform laid the foundation for the transformative power of social networking.

During the early days of the internet, Six Degrees aimed to bring people together in the digital realm. Weinreich’s brainchild allowed users to create profiles, connect with friends, and exchange messages. In other words, he pioneered the concept of social networking that would shape the future of online interactions.

Making connections

At the heart of Six Degrees was its emphasis on fostering connections. Users could expand their network by linking to friends and acquaintances, creating a web of interwoven relationships. This focus on connectivity became the driving force behind the subsequent explosion of social networking platforms.

However, Six Degrees faced significant challenges along its journey. The internet infrastructure was still in its early stages, characterized by slow speeds and limited accessibility. Additionally, the lack of widespread smartphone usage hindered the platform’s growth. Ultimately, Six Degrees ceased operations in 2000, marking the end of its pioneering era.

Those that came after

Nevertheless, Six Degrees remains a precursor to the vast array of social media platforms we engage with today. Its visionary concept paved the way for subsequent platforms to thrive and redefine the way we connect and engage online.

Following in the footsteps of Six Degrees, a wave of social media platforms emerged in the early 2000s, each offering unique features and functionalities. Platforms like MySpace, Friendster, and LinkedIn capitalized on the growing desire for digital connections and played a crucial role in shaping the social media landscape we know today.

The legacy of Six Degrees lives on as an instrumental chapter in the history of social media. While its reign was relatively short-lived, the platform’s pioneering spirit and its vision of interconnectedness set the stage for the remarkable evolution of social networking that followed.

 WTF fun facts

Source: “Then and now: a history of social networking sites” — CBS News

WTF Fun Fact 13250 – Posting Uninformed Comments

We all know that the comment section is a black hole that attracts uninformed comments. It’s the place where dignity and informed debate go to die. But a 2019 study by researchers at York College of Pennsylvania gives some insight into why these comments are so prevalent.

However, the authors distinguish between being uninformed (recognizing one’s own ignorance) and misinformed (confidently holding inaccurate beliefs). In this case, we’re talking mainly about misinformation. But not all researchers use these words in the same way.

Why are there so many uninformed comments and misinformed commenters?

In a nutshell, it’s because people just don’t read enough. If they do, they skim previews of most content. This is especially true when it’s about something that riles them up – like politics. They don’t take the time to really try and process what an article is about before they comment on it. In fact, skimming makes them highly confident that they do have something worthwhile to say. Never mind that this is correlated with having less reliable insight.

According to ScienceAlert’s coverage of the research (cited below):

“By glancing through article previews, instead of reading the full piece, many users overestimate their understanding of an issue, and this is especially true for those whose knowledge is guided by strong emotions – and, therefore, strong opinions.”

The research on uninformed comments comes from the academic article “A little bit of knowledge: Facebook’s News Feed and self-perceptions of knowledge” published in the journal Research & Politics.

There, the authors note:

“We argue that Facebook’s News Feed itself, with its short article previews, provides enough political information for learning to occur. However, this learning comes with an additional consequence: audiences who only read article previews think they know more than they actually do, especially individuals who are motivated to seek emotions.”

Emotions over data

You’ve probably noticed that people with strong opinions like to throw out information they seem confident about. But it’s worth considering how much it matches their desire to seem smart.

The researchers noted, “Those who are more driven by emotion allow the positive feelings associated with being right to override the need for actual accuracy, thus coming away from limited exposure to information falsely overconfident in their knowledge of the subject matter.”

Sound like anyone you know on social media?  WTF fun facts

Source: “Didn’t Read The Article Before Commenting? Science Says It Really Shows” — Science Alert

WTF Fun Fact 13011 – Facebook and Divorce

What’s the connection between Facebook and divorce? Well, one clue comes from a study published back in 2013 that found an astonishing 1/3 of divorce papers included a reference to the social media platform.

The relationship between Facebook and divorce

We’d be interested to know where this study stands now and if anyone looked more deeply into the results. What we do know is that in 2011, 1/3rd of all divorce filings contained the word “Facebook,” according to Divorce Online. This was up from 20% just three years earlier. ABC News (cited below) also pointed out that “more than 80 percent of U.S. divorce attorneys say social networking in divorce proceedings is on the rise, according to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.”

Lawyers have also seen an increase in the number of times Facebook has been used to prove infidelity during divorce cases as well as in child custody hearings.

ABC News also reported that “Despite the increase, the top Facebook mentions were the same: inappropriate messages to “friends” of the opposite sex, and cruel posts or comments between separated spouses. Sometimes, Facebook friends would tattle to one partner in a relationship about bad behavior by the other.”

How Facebook affects relationships

A 2013 study in the journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking also showed that Facebook was playing an important role in the end of relationships.

While Facebook might have helped some of us forge new relationships, it may not be the best use of our time once we’re in them. In fact, it may be damaging to our romantic relationships, according to Russell Clayton who performed the research and found that “people who use Facebook excessively are far more likely to experience Facebook-related conflict with their romantic partners, which then may cause negative relationship outcomes including emotional and physical cheating, breakup and divorce,” according to a press release.”

By surveying Facebook users ages 18 to 82 years old, the researcher found that high levels of Facebook use among couples “significantly predicted Facebook-related conflict, which then significantly predicted negative relationship outcomes such as cheating, breakup, and divorce.”

When it came to couples in a relationship for three years or less, Facebook proved to be a particularly large problem.

“Previous research has shown that the more a person in a romantic relationship uses Facebook, the more likely they are to monitor their partner’s Facebook activity more stringently, which can lead to feelings of jealousy,” Clayton said. “Facebook-induced jealousy may lead to arguments concerning past partners. Also, our study found that excessive Facebook users are more likely to connect or reconnect with other Facebook users, including previous partners, which may lead to emotional and physical cheating.”

If you want your relationship to last, you may want to consider being more mindful about how and how often you use social media.  WTF fun facts

Source: “Can Facebook Ruin Your Marriage?” — ABC News

WTF Fun Fact 13007 – Dead People With Facebook Accounts

Fun Fact: An estimated 30 million Facebook accounts belong to people who have died. By the year 2070, a study has estimated there will be more dead people with Facebook accounts than living users.


Studies estimate that somewhere between 10 million and 30 million Facebook accounts belong to users who have died. Facebook can memorialize accounts if they’re notified of a death, but most people don’t think to plan for the legacy of their social media accounts. According to PopCrush, “a Good Trust survey revealed ‘some 90 percent of people here in the U.S. have no plans whatsoever” as to “what happens to the digital stuff’ after they die.”

Of course, Facebook is notoriously private about user data, so there’s no way to confirm the exact numbers.

Facebook, graveyard

According to The Guardian (cited below), “If Facebook continues to grow at its current rate, the site could have 4.9 billion deceased members by 2100…” This was estimated by Oxford University researchers.

“Even if growth had stopped entirely last year, the study finds, Facebook would be looking at about 1.4 billion dead members by 2100. By 2070, in that scenario, the dead would already outnumber the living.”

The ethical issues of dead Facebook users

You may not think it’s a big deal if a social media user is dead, but questions arise about who owns the data they’ve posted. This is especially thorny if they’ve posted something in the past that family or friends come to consider private.

The question is: who is entitled to your digital legacy?

If you haven’t left a trusted person with your passwords in the event of your death, is there anything on your social media pages that could become problematic in the future? (This might be a big problem if, for example, you spend a lot of time posting about your kids.) WTF fun facts

Source: “Facebook could have 4.9bn dead users by 2100, study finds” — The Guardian