In the previous article in this series, we proposed Identity Reinforcement as the fundamental cause behind most of what we do –and the reason for Facebook’s addictive power and overwhelming success. Throughout their lives, people try to build and reinforce a certain identity. This need for reinforcement conditions us to favor information that confirms our worldview, and social interaction in which our identity is approved. What Facebook does is that it gives its users a physical place for displaying their persona and receiving positive social feedback on themselves. The idea is not particularly new, but it’s an incredibly powerful one, and FB implements it well.
Yet, not every user is fully satisfied with Facebook’s impact on their time and social lives. Besides the usual critics such as FB being a time waster, lacking privacy options in the release of personal contents, etc., an interesting comment that I keep hearing is that social interaction on Facebook feels empty, pointless –fake, even.