A narrative Overview About Psychosocial Characteristics as Risk Factors of a Problematic Social Networks Use

Purpose of Review Social networks use disorder describes the problematic use of social networking sites and onlinecommunication applications. Social characteristic of social networks use emphasizes the special relevance of psychosocial factors and social cognitions in this context. The current review aims at summarizing findings on individual psychosocial characteristics to analyze the relevance of social processes as potential mechanisms of a social networks use disorder.

Recent Findings The empirical overview illustrates that, aside from psychopathological factors, individual psychosocial characteristics and social cognitions as well as their interactions appear to be relevant risk factors for a problematic use of social networks. However, empirical findings are mixed.

Summary We propose two hypotheses on the development of a potential social networks use disorder that might account for mixed results: the fear-driven/compensation-seeking hypothesisincluding compensatory use expectancies and the reward-driven hypothesis including positive use expectancies as key elements, both of which could lead to symptoms of social networks use disorder depending on interindividual differences in predisposing and reinforcing factors.


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