Research Paper

Living on A Virtual Planet. Predictors of Facebook Addiction

Author: Claudia-Maria Toma
University of Bucharest, Bucharest, Romania

Research suggests that Facebook use and addiction can affect social, cognitive, emotional and physical functioning, and many addicted users feel at a different level depressive symptoms, anxiety, loneliness, social isolation, self-efficacy. Also, Facebook users prove narcissistic traits and characteristics of extraversion and neuroticism. In view of previous research, the aim of the present study is to assess potential predictors of Facebook addiction. The number of participants is 242  Facebook users, and the assessment tools for Facebook addiction (IAT adapted for Facebook; Young, 1998), need to belong (Need to Belong Scale; Leary, Kelly, Cottrell, & Schreindorfer, 2012), loneliness (UCLA Scale; Russell, Peplau, & Cutrona, 1980), personality traits (BFI; John, Donahue, & Kentle, 1991) and communal narcissism (CNI; Gebauer, Sedikides, Verplanken, Maio, 2012) were administered online, on Facebook. Results suggest that the need to belong, agreeableness, conscientiousness and neuroticism can predict Facebook addiction and Facebook addiction only for men. We consider that additional research is necessary in order to clarify the relation between loneliness, extraversion, openness to experience and Facebook type of experience and if agentic narcissism and age can predict it as well.

Keywords: facebook addiction, facebook usage, personality traits, loneliness, need to belong, communal narcissism, gender