Science and Technology

Facebook? Divorce? You don’t say!

From data breach, to providing a base for political manipulators and a comfortable home for hate mongers and criminals, Facebook is on the roll. And the latest? You may not believe this. Facebook is now being accused for an uptick in the rate of divorces around the world.

Whereas previous studies had shown that the more a person uses social media sites, like Facebook, the more they were likely to monitor their partners, a legal magazine, HG.org.now reports that a study conducted by Russell Clayton, a doctoral student in the University of Missouri School of Journalism, and his colleagues at the University of Hawaii at Hilo and St. Mary’s University in San Antonio,
“found that people who use Facebook more than once an hour are more likely to “experience Facebook–related conflict with their romantic partners which can lead to a breakup or divorce.”

According to the magazine,
“Clayton and his team hypothesized that more frequent social media use and monitoring of one’s partner could lead to misunderstandings and feelings of jealousy. The study appears to have proved that hypothesis by noting a strong correlation between Facebook use and relationship stability. Clayton posited that, for most, the correlation probably stems from jealousy and arguments about past partners related to social media snooping.”

Social media, according to the study, makes it possible for users to reconnect with others, including past lovers, which could lead to emotional and physical cheating.

Clayton’s study is not the first of its kind. Hg.org reports that
“In 2012, Divorce-Online UK , surveyed British divorce lawyers to determine if there was an anecdotal connection between social media use and divorce. According to that survey, approximately one in three divorces resulted from social media-related disagreements. Similarly, a 2010 survey by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) found that four out of five lawyers used evidence derived from social networking sites in divorce cases, with Facebook leading the pack.”

The magazine offers the following advice.
1. Discuss the dangers of social media in a relationship setting with your partner. Try to agree to appropriate limits on use, avoid snooping on one another, and make sure that you spend more time interacting in person than monitoring what the rest of the world is doing on social media.

2. Censor yourself on social media. Think about your potential audience before posting anything, even in the happiest of times. If there are already things online that you would prefer not coming up in a court proceeding or job interview, you should take them down immediately. If someone else posts embarrassing photos or comments, simply delete, un-tag, or ask the acquaintance to kindly remove the offending post. Social sites have also created more tools to report content that you do not control, but which is about you or depicts you, and which you find unflattering or offensive.

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