Social Media and Therapy (2013)
Module: Independent Study Project (Singapore Polytechnic)
Can Twitter be therapeutic? Many people question the nature of social media and think that it has a bad impact on society because it decreases face to face communication. Twitter is a platform that has been growing rapidly, with many celebrities joining it as well. People post about what they are doing and feeling in real time. It is always a ready and accessible platform for many, especially in more developed countries where mobile penetration is high.
This report delves into the possibility that Twitter could be therapeutic, with users complaining constantly about how bad something is. The “therapy” refers to users releasing tension and finding relief after tweeting about their negative emotions. Online social support groups could also be a way that help users feel better, with the support, understanding and friendship they gain.
Here are some of the interesting findings, from the survey conducted:
- 70.2% of respondents are on Twitter everyday, and users who log on 2-5 times/week tweet more about videos, celebrities, news and religion as compared to others
- 46.4% of respondents tweet during and after the event that caused them to feel negative emotions
- 49.8% post 2-5 tweets before stopping
- By comparison of the means, respondents do not filter more when expressing negative emotions as compared to the usual occasion
- 48.8%, the majority felt some relief after expressing their negative emotions on Twitter
- 61% feels that they are affected by what they read online
Most importantly, it has also been found that Twitter can be therapeutic, in various manners that will be elaborated in the report, especially when there is a confiding process. However, we also cannot deny that there are cons to tweeting about one’s problems online.