It’s hard to know who to listen to when it comes to the effects, both beneficial and harmful, of using various Internet services.
While some have suggested that all forms of social networking sites may harm development and relationships, a British psychologist is bucking the trend by suggesting that the use of Facebook may boost memory recall.
Sterling University’s Dr Tracy Alloway said that users who spent more time using Facebook had a boost in intelligence, and may have the same positive effects as playing video war games or solving puzzles like Sudoku.
“I’m not saying they’re good for your socialisation skills, but they do make you use your working memory. You’re keeping track of past actions and mapping the actions you’re going to take,” she said.
However, based on the same criteria, users of Twitter may not be so lucky. Of both Twitter and text messaging, she suggested, “You don’t have to process that information. Your attention span is being reduced and you’re not engaging your brain and improving nerve connections.”
I can see this being used as an excuse for spending more time on Facebook.