Why do people take “selfies?”
Researchers at Syracuse University in New York tried to answer that question. They came up with some surprising answers.
People who post selfies and use editing software to make themselves look better show behavior connected to narcissism, the Syracuse researchers said.
Narcissists are people who think very highly of themselves, especially how they look.
Ji Won Kim, a doctoral student at the university’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, worked on the study. She said because social media can be superficial, it is a good place for people to “work towards satisfying their own vanity.”
By superficial, she means social media is mostly used by people to share unimportant information about their lives — not deeply personal issues.
There are other reasons, besides narcissism, that people post selfies.
People who post group selfies show a need for popularity and a need to belong to a group, the Syracuse University research found.
Other findings from the study include:
There are no major differences on how often men and women post selfies and how often they use editing software. But men who post selfies showed more of a need to be seen as popular than women who posted selfies.
The Newhouse School’s Associate Professor Makana Chock worked on the study. She said selfies should not be seen as completely negative