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Psychological Predictors of Addictive Social Networking Sites Use:The Case of Serbia

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The popularity of social networking sites (SNS) changed to a great extent not only media environment, but also everyday life activities of modern humans. Despite their obvious benefits in terms of communication, there is evidence of addictive tendencies in SNS use. The study examined psychological and socio-demographic predictors of these addictive tendencies in Serbian SNS users drawn from a representative sample (N = 2014), having in mind that Serbia has Facebook penetration rate over European average. Results indicate a low incidence of self-reported addictive tendencies, with some individual differences worth addressing. We developed and tested exhaustive model that included three sets of predictors (socio-demographic, psychological and exposure to traditional media), as well as restrictive models that systematically excluded group by group. Path analysis revealed that psychological traits were stronger predictors than socio-demographic ones: people with lower self-esteem, lower general self-efficacy and higher introversion were more likely to report addictive SNS use. Although our results in general support the so called “social compensation hypothesis”, it can be due to the focus on addictive tendencies instead of other indicators of SNS use.
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... The study of Younus (2016) concluded social media addiction was related to psychological disorders. Similarly, Kirschnecf (2014) and Matsue (2014) both confirmed the negative impact of social media use on university students' mental health and increased anxiety. The results of the Sullivan and Paradise (2012) study revealed 64% of college students use Facebook seven days a week. ...
... In reverse also, when an individual lives in psychological and social deficiency, this may consequently lead him to these sites to satisfy and compensate. This result is consistent with many previous studies such as (Kirschnecf, 2014;Matsue, 2014;Sullivan, 2012, Younus, 2016. This can explain the differences in mental health according to the degree of social media use and the number of hours as the mental health negatively correlated with both the degree of use and the number of hours increase. ...
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... The possible aetiology of problematic SNS use has been studied extensively with psychological traits such as lower self-esteem, lower general self-efficacy, higher introversion (Milošević-Đorđević & Ž eželj, 2014), the need to compensate thwarted intrinsic needs (Masur et al., 2014), cognitive-emotional and cognitive-behavioural factors (Ryan et al., 2014;Turel & Qahri-Saremi, 2016), neurobiological processes (Kuss & Griffiths, 2012), and sociocultural factors (Ji et al., 2010) listed as the probable causes underlying the development of problematic SNS use. Regardless of these important endeavours to identify the causes of problematic SNS use, we still know little about the mechanisms underlying the development of problematic SNS use (Hussain & Starcevic, 2020). ...
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