A recent study published in Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking looks at the relationship between Facebook use and perceptions of other’s lives. The authors, sociologists Hui-Tzu Grace Chou and Nicholas Edge from Utah Valley University, find that those with greater involvement in Facebook feel that others have better and happier lives than they do. This is amplified for those who have many Facebook Friends with whom they do not interact outside of the online platform. These findings have been picked up by several mainstream media outlets, and unsurprisingly, are used as evidence of the deleterious impacts of an over-digitized world. An ABC news story, for example, retrieved through Yahoo! News, concludes with the following advice:

 “So if you are looking for a way to cheer yourself up…you may do well to log off Facebook. Call your best friend instead.”

 The comment sections are full of vindicated technological dystopianists extoling the benefits of face-to-face (read: real) over digitally mediated interaction. To keep things consistent, I will share some of the comments from the news story linked above:

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