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Facebook profiles can tell you more than just peoples' birthdays and what movies they like — they can reveal the self-adoring, a new study suggests.

Researchers at the University of Georgia gave personality questionnaires to nearly 130 Facebook users and analyzed the content of their online profiles. They also had untrained observers look at the profiles and rate how narcissistic, or excessively egotistical, the owners of the profiles were.

The results of the study are detailed in the October issue of the journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.

The researchers found that the number of friends and wall posts (messages left by the owner of the profile or friends) that a person had on their profile correlated with how narcissistic they were. Study leader Laura Buffardi, a Ph.D. student in psychology, said this is similar to how narcissists behave in the real world, forming numerous but shallow relationships with others.

Narcissistic Facebook users were also more likely to have glamorous, self-promoting pictures for their main profile photo, while others tended to use snapshots, the study found. The untrained observers also noted the differences in photos and amount of social interaction.

"We found that people who are narcissistic use Facebook in a self-promoting way that can be identified by others," Buffardi said.

Narcissism hampers a person's ability to form healthy, long-term relationships, said study co-author W. Keith Campbell.

"Narcissists might initially be seen as charming, but they end up using people for their own advantage," Campbell said. "They hurt the people around them and they hurt themselves in the long run."

In the past, research has found that personal Web pages are more popular among narcissists, but this doesn't mean that all Facebook users are narcissists.

"Nearly all of our students use Facebook, and it seems to be a normal part of people's social interactions," Campbell said. "It just turns out that narcissists are using Facebook the same way they use their other relationships — for self-promotion with an emphasis on quantity over quality."

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Comment by caseyjo on August 30, 2009 at 7:19pm
FRom Wikipedia: Facebook is a social networking website that is operated and privately owned by Facebook, Inc.[1] Users can add friends and send them messages, and update their personal profiles to notify friends about themselves. Additionally, users can join networks organized by city, workplace, school, and region. The website's name stems from the colloquial name of books given at the start of the academic year by university administrations with the intention of helping students get to know each other better.

I use facebook.....I now have most of my x-husbands family on my profile and some of their friends too. Its trippy, fun if you like apps..there are many...the young people and even some old playful old folks like apps. I cant keep up with them all....
Comment by Krisit on August 30, 2009 at 2:31pm
Gary, this is a scary thought. I would hate to think I am narcissistic. I would assume people with TBD profiles are also narcissistic as well. I can say one thing the world is loaded with narcissistic people.

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