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TikTok: This surprising study reveals why young people are getting addicted

© Unsplash/Solen Feyissa

We spend several hours every day with our eyes glued to our smartphones. What is commonplace today was not at all obvious fifteen years ago. Researchers from the Becker Friedman Institute of Economics and the University of Chicago tried to better understand what pushes Internet users to use these applications such as Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, or Facebook.

The fear of missing something important

To see things more clearly, the scientists recruited 1000 students and promised them money if they deactivated their accounts on these platforms. One figure in particular catches our attention: 58% of those surveyed say they would like to live in a world where TikTok and Instagram did not exist.

< p>But why don't they pick up ? And this is where things get interesting. Indeed, the main reason is the concept of FOMO or Fear of Missing Out, which can be translated as the fear of missing a big trend which could exclude us from the group to which we belong. Human beings being a social animal by nature, this perspective is clearly a nightmare.

Other causes were put forward by the participants and in particular the fact that they were addicted to these applications, or that they just used them for entertainment, which can also be understood here, as long as it is a controlled practice.

Social networks are changing in nature

In any case, we observe a fairly clear trend among certain younger users who are abandoning (a little) the major social networks to turn to instant messaging applications such as WhatsApp, Telegram, Discord or Signal. They have more control and the interactions are inherently healthier, since we can bring together in the same place loved ones who share the same centers of interest.

However, platforms such as TikTok remain a reflex. According to a 2023 survey, 74% of Generation Z uses TikTok when looking for information and more than half say they prefer the social network's search bar to Google.

What do you think of these recent developments observed on social networks ? Have you changed your own usage habits ? Do not hesitate to share your feelings in the comments.

What to remember:

  • Many social media users are eager to uninstall these apps
  • They do not do so out of fear of missing something important and isolating themselves from their social group
  • Messaging applications where you can communicate with loved ones are popular

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Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116