Celebrity Instagram content linked to negative feelings, Facebook researchers say

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Sep 30 (Businesshala) – Major social media stars including Kim Kardashian, Justin Bieber and Charlie D’Amelio are among celebrities whose Instagram followers experience more negative feelings about their self-image, as shown by internal Facebook (FB.O) research has shown. The Wall Street Journal is raising questions this week about the impact of online celebrity culture.

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The journal released the leaked research slide deck on Wednesday, which served as the basis for articles published earlier this month that said Facebook knew its apps could affect the mental health of some teenage girls and young users. do harm to.

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The research, titled “Social Comparison on Instagram,” surveyed 100,000 people in nine countries, including the United States, Australia and Brazil, in March and April 2020.

Facebook spokesman Kevin McAllister said survey respondents were not asked to name specific accounts, but the researchers found that celebrity accounts were “the most frequently viewed accounts for people who told us they had followed Instagram.” have experienced high or low levels of negative social comparison,” based on company internal data.

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He added that the findings are understandable as each of the listed celebrities has over 30 million followers.

The Facebook researchers did not study whether exposure to users of those celebrity accounts led to negative feelings about them.

Facebook researchers found that singer Ariana Grande and model Kendall Jenner were among celebrities whose followers perceived social comparisons as more negative.

Facebook researchers noted in the slide deck that the company may partner with stars on campaigns to reduce negative comparisons.

On the other hand, the Instagram account belonging to “The Ellen Show”, which is hosted by comedian Ellen DeGeneres, was followed by American actor Will Smith and Brazilian football player Neymar, who felt “less negative comparisons” according to the research slide deck. .

The findings are noteworthy given that Instagram helped fuel the rise of social media influencers and efforts to recruit celebrities to the app in its early days.

According to an anecdote told in the book “No Filter: The Inside Story of Instagram,” actor Ashton Kutcher was the star who helped Instagram gain credibility with other celebrities and helped introduce the company to Grande.

According to the LinkedIn bios of some employees, the company’s partnership team also works with celebrities, musicians, and other public figures to improve their presence on Instagram.

Facebook researchers found that viewing more celebrity content in the Instagram feed was associated with more negative comparisons.

Research has shown that almost half of the content people see on Instagram comes from celebrities.

Reporting by Sheila Dang in Dallas; Editing by Leslie Adler

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