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Study: Posting Facebook Photos Negatively Impacts Real-Life Relationships

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File photo of a person using Facebook. (Photo Illustration by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

File photo of a person using Facebook. (Photo Illustration by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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WASHINGTON (CBSDC) –  A new study finds that sharing, or over-sharing, your photographs on Facebook may have a significant negative impact on real-life relationships.

According to research from the University of Birmingham, University West of England and the University of Edinburgh, people who frequently post photos to Facebook can’t control how their various “friends” will perceive the posts.

“It’s worth remembering that the information we post to our ‘friends’ on Facebook, actually gets viewed by lots of different categories of people: partners; friends; family; colleagues and acquaintances,” said Dr. David Houghton, lead author of the report, told Phys.org. “And each group seems to take a different view of the information shared.”

“Our research found that those who frequently post photographs on Facebook risk damaging real-life relationships. 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.”

Entitled “Tagger’s Delight?” the study found that those who share more photos had a decrease in intimacy and closeness in their relationships. Also, a real-life friendship only saw negative impacts with more photos posted to the social network website.

“Partners sharing more photographs of family is positively related to support, whereas partners sharing more photographs of friends is related negatively to intimacy,” the report reads.

The study also found that large advertising campaigns that encourage fans to post photos with their products were also negatively impacted.

“While benefitting brand awareness and critical mass of a Facebook fan page for a brand, organization or cause, sharing photographs may be harmful to those asked to participate,” the report states.”

According to a 2013 Pew Research Center poll, two-thirds of online American adults (67 percent) are Facebook users, making Facebook the dominant social networking site in this country.

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