Affinity-seeking, social loneliness, and social avoidance among Facebook users

Psychol Rep. 2013 Apr;112(2):545-52. doi: 10.2466/07.PR0.112.2.545-552.


This study explored the relations between use of the social networking site Facebook and scores on affinity-seeking, social loneliness, and social avoidance by 313 college students. Social loneliness and social avoidance, but not affinity-seeking, were positively and statistically significantly related to time spent using Facebook. The number of close Facebook friends was negatively and statistically significantly related to social loneliness and social avoidance. Women perceived Facebook as a more integral part of daily interactions than did men. 38% of the 283 Facebook members indicated their accounts contained information and/or a picture that could embarrass them, with men having significantly more embarrassing content than women. The findings are discussed within the context of social compensation.

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Friends / psychology
  • Gender Identity
  • Humans
  • Interpersonal Relations
  • Loneliness / psychology*
  • Male
  • Psychological Distance*
  • Self Disclosure
  • Social Behavior
  • Social Identification*
  • Social Media*
  • Students / psychology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires