Can a Facebook profile tell others how anxious you are?

Yes, it can:

Research on Facebook has suggested that individuals’ profiles are an accurate portrayal of the self and that it may be possible to identify traits such as narcissism and extraversion by viewing a Facebook profile. It has been suggested, however, that largely internal experiences, such as anxiety, should be less detectable in such contexts. In the current study, the authors tested if objective criteria (e.g., number of interests) on users’ profiles (N = 62) could discriminate between individuals who were higher and lower in social anxiety. The authors asked six coders to view each participant’s Facebook profile and rate the participant’s level of social anxiety and then tested whether these ratings correlated with the participant’s own self-reported social anxiety level. Our results suggest that social anxiety is recognizable both in objective criteria on the Facebook profile page and from raters’ impressions of the Facebook profile. Clinical and research implications are discussed.

Source: Profiling: Predicting Social Anxiety From Facebook Profiles” from Social Psychological and Personality Science, January 19, 2012

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