Facebook Comments Affect Us More Than We Realize

In an era where social media is king and FOMO is in the dictionary, it's a given that what you do on-screen also has a very real impact on other parts of your life. Logging on to Facebook and snapping your brunch are as embedded in your day as drinking coffee when you wake up.

But how do your interactions on a site such as Facebook compare to those that happen in real life? Can earning a certain number of comments on a post really matter as much as major life events like getting married and having kids?

The answer, somewhat scarily, is yes. A study conducted by Facebook researchers and professors at Carnegie Mellon University's School of Computer Science, found that comments are directly tied to someone's satisfaction in life. However, there's a catch. The comments can't be from just anyone — they need to be from people who you like and count as good friends.

The researchers determined these results by asking 1,910 Facebook users questions about their well-being and comparing their answers to logs of their activity on the site. The number of likes on a post didn't matter, but personal comments from friends did. The magic number of comments — i.e. the one that produced the most joy — was 60.

However, while it's reasonable that comments could make you feel content on a temporary basis, it's difficult to believe that they could sustain those feelings for longer periods of time. At least not to the extent that a strong, in-person relationship or meaningful job might. Still, that's not to say you shouldn't help a friend out and leave a comment where you can.

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