Helge: Is blogging bad for your health, real social relationships? Should there be a limit for how much blogging is good? Remember the times when people spent less than one hour per day on the Net to check email?
This evidence is the result of two related studies conducted by the Swinburne University Technology in Melbourne, Australia. The first study, attended to by researchers Susan Moore and James Baker, involved messaging 600 MySpace users a survey link; of the 600 messaged, 134 completed the survey, according to ABC News.
Helge: What have I learned? Blogging has made me a better writer in three languages: Finnish, Swedish and English.
Of the 134 who completed the linked survey, 84 users intended to blog whereas the remaining 50 did not. Included in the survey were a series of questions intended to ascertain the mental health of each participant; the survey found that those who intended to blog were less satisfied with their social connections to friends and family than those who did not intend to blog.
Helge: Intended to blog... How about bloggers?
The followup study was sent to the same group of users; only 59 individuals responded. However, those that originally intended to blog reported feeling more satisfied socially as a result of being a part of a group of like-minded individuals. Those same individuals expressed a feeling that they could rely on others for help as well.
Helge: More open, huh?
On the whole, all MySpace users contacted felt more at ease and less stressed after spending 2 months of steady social-networking on the popular site.
Helge: Less stressed when blogging, maybe?
Whether or not these results are viable is up in the air; a survey with less than 200 participants can have a fairly large sample error. Additionally, it would seem feasible that most users who participate in social networking on sites like MySpace are inherently more apt to participate in blogging, and it is also possible those same people went to MySpace with the intention of finding friends and creating “meaningful” connections.
Helge: This study is very limited but there are some interesting signs and indications.