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Fighting again? New study suggests Twitter could be to blame

A recent study published in the journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, has revealed that high amounts of Twitter usage can be bad for relationships.

High amounts of Twitter use can cause friction within a couple, according to findings from an online survey of 581 Twitter users. In turn, that friction can lead to cheating and breakups, the researchers concluded.

To measure Twitter’s effect on relationships, researchers created a 20-question online survey and then tweeted it out to more than 3.4 million users. The study, published recently in the journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, ended up with 581 participants.


The survey asked questions about amount of Twitter use, and whether it had caused conflict in their relationship.

On average, participants said they used Twitter about 52 minutes a day, five days a week.

Researchers found that increased Twitter use was associated with high amounts of conflict over that use, which in turn led to cheating or the failure of the relationship. Conflict occurred regardless of how long the people had been in the relationship.

‘There’s been growing literature that these social networking sites may directly impair communications between partners, and that can lead to increasing jealousy,’ said Dr. Scott Krakower, assistant unit chief of psychiatry at Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, N.Y. ‘You’re spending a lot of time on the Internet, and that’s taking away from time with your partner.’

This is not the first time social networking has caused relationship problems. According to another study in the journal, Facebook can cause feelings of jealousy while in a relationship. Russel Clayton who led that study, said ‘Previous research has shown that the more a person in a romantic relationship uses Facebook, the more likely they are to monitor their partner’s Facebook activity more stringently.

‘Facebook-induced jealousy may lead to arguments concerning past partners,’ Clayton explained. ‘Also, our study found that excessive Facebook users are more likely to connect or reconnect with other Facebook users, including previous partners, which may lead to emotional and physical cheating.’ 

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