Are You a Friending Addict?

According to a new study published today, women on Facebook are becoming “hooked on the urge to ‘acquire’ more and more friends”. The article continues to explain that David Smallwood, a psychologist, “claims women are vulnerable to the addition as they get their self worth from relationships and Facebook compels them to seek out hundred of cohorts.”

The article also suggested that the feminization of the web is being driven by social networking sites. Just last year there was a report published which suggested females between 25 and 49 were spending more time on the web then their male counterparts. At least 10 percent of the Facebook population are at risk of “friendship addiction”. The study claims “women are more vulnerable as they place more of their self-worth on their relationships”.

In the world of social media, friend addiction is common place. We publicize how many Twitter followers we have, friends on Facebook, and the number of relationships on other sites. The issue is a feeling of inadequacy for not having the most friends in a group. Honestly, I think competition for popularity within social circles has always been an issue for many.

Personally, I always try to add contacts as it essentially expands my reach. The real question is not how many Facebook friends or Twitter followers you have though. What’s more important is how many people you have “real” relationships with. No matter how hard we try, that will never be scalable. Locally within social circles in the D.C. metro area, I frequently meet people that are envious of others that have many online friends and appear to be popular.

Image is everything though for many of the more “connected” individuals and much of this image is a facade. So do you have issues with friending addiction? Are your friends Facebook friending addicts?