The effect of highly-visual social media on young people’s body satisfaction
1University of Oulu, Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, Department of Information Processing Science, Information Processing Science
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Oulu : O. Konola,
As social media gains more users day after day, it raises some questions regarding the potential effects it could have on people. Because of this, this thesis researched the effect of highly-visual social media on young people’s body satisfaction.
To this end, this research utilised the Body Satisfaction Questionnaire 16a version in the creation of the online survey, which was used in the data collection phase. The online survey was done by using Google Forms service, and the survey was distributed to the participants through school principals, in case of vocational schools and high schools, or through school mailing lists, in case of University or University of Applied Science.
The research method utilised is quantitative research method, because the main point of this research was to see whether there is a significant difference between the body satisfaction of NSM users and the highly-visual social media users. The data was analysed by using the SPSS software.
The results show that there is a statistically significant difference between the body satisfaction of highly-visual social media users and NSM users, where the highly-visual social media users have higher body dissatisfaction, when compared to the NSM users. There is also a statistically significant difference in the likelihood for change in body satisfaction between the users of highly-visual social media and NSM, where the highlyvisual social media users are more likely to have an increase in their body dissatisfaction, when compared to the users of NSM.
Based on the findings of this study, it can be concluded that there is indeed a connection between the highly-visual social media and the body satisfaction experienced by young people. Through the social- and appearance-based comparison, highly-visual social media causes increased body dissatisfaction in young people, when compared to the young people using NSM.
For future research, it is suggested that social media’s effect on body satisfaction is studied more in regards of the vector of effect. How does highly-visual social media effect young peoples’ body satisfaction? Is it direct or indirect? This study argues that the effect is done through indirect methods of social- and appearance-based comparison.
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