According to new research, selfies are linked to narcissism in men, but not in women. The research, undertaken by Polish psychologist, went further, providing an understanding about which aspects of narcissism were associated with selfie-taking for each gender.
Research, though still scant, is emerging about who posts selfies and why.
According to the new Polish study, which examined three types of selfies — solo selfies, selfies with a romantic partner, and group selfies — and examined almost 1300 Polish men and women — not just American men, the subject of the recent popular news report on selfies and narcissism — men and women vary in exhibiting selfie behavior.
The researchers tried two things: they asked one group of men and women to self-report how many selfies of each of the three types they posted to Facebook and other social media. Then they obtained access to the social media accounts of a second group to count the selfies.
Women post more selfies than men do on social media, the researchers found.
But the researchers also wanted to get an understanding of the relationship between selfie posting and narcissism. They tested participants for narcissistic traits — four separate traits: Exhibitionism, Admiration Demand, Leadership and Self-Sufficiency.
When they compared their narcissism test results with the selfie posting numbers, they found that selfie posting by males was positively correlated with Exhibitionism, Admiration Demand and Leadership, but not Self-Sufficiency. For men, these relationships existed for all types of selfie pictures.
For women, only a correlation between selfie posting and Admiration Demand was found, and only for solo selfies in the first study and romantic partners in the second.
However, the researchers concluded that narcissism only explains a small part of self-posting, because the correlations were all quite modest.
The study, “Selfie posting behaviors are associated with narcissism among men,” was completed by Sorokowski, P., Sorokowska, A., Oleszkiewicz, A., Frackowiak, T., Huk, A., & Pisanski, K. and was published in Personality and Individual Differences.
By Cheryl Bretton