We all have that friend. The one who’s uploaded 4000 photos of her fun trips to the football game and her fun trips to the mountains and her fun trips to the beach and her fun trips to the bars and her fun trips to everywhere else. We all have that friend and we all hate that friend and her 4000 photos.
Turns out there’s actually science to back up why that is. A new study from four (four!) British universities shows that there’s an inverse relationship between how frequently a friend posts photos on Facebook and how much we like them. “Our research found that those who frequently post photographs on Facebook risk damaging real-life relationships,” wrote lead author Dr. David Houghton in a report about the study. “This is because people, other than very close friends and relatives, don’t seem to relate well to those who constantly share photos of themselves.” He added, perhaps obviously, that different friend categories react differently but most react negatively.
The study itself was pretty simple. A little over 500 participants were essentially asked to rate how frequently certain friends posted different types of photos to the social network. Separately, they rated their levels of support and intimacy for the friend. The trend lines don’t lie:
As you can see above, friends like photos of friends and partners like photos of you. Otherwise, pretty much everyone hates your stupid Facebook photos. The good news is that there’s something you can do about it. Just listen to Dr. Ben Marder from the University of Edinburgh Business School: “My advice for people sharing photos or links with a fan site is think twice and share once.” Or, you know, switch to Flickr. [PhysOrg]