Facebook reveals internal investigation into Instagram’s impact on teenagers

Facebook has revealed internal presentations about the research into Instagram’s mental health effects. The Wall Street Journal had previously written an article about the investigation, but according to Facebook, the conclusions drawn by the newspaper are incorrect.

The two presentations Facebook has unveiled deal with results of an internal investigation the company has conducted into the well-being of teens. According to Facebook, these were the presentations that The Wall Street Journal mainly used in its, Facebook says, misconceptions about the investigation. Facebook has provided the slides with comments to provide more context, in its own words. The company also shared these slides with Congress, where Facebook must answer to the allegations of WSJ for the conclusions of the investigation.

About one of the slides that WSJ already disclosed in the original post, Facebook is now saying that the title it gave the slide itself was misleading. It reads: ‘For teens with mental health problems, Instagram makes them worse’, but should really have been, according to Facebook: ‘Teens who are less satisfied with their lives are more likely to say that Instagram worsens their mental health or self-image than teens who are satisfied with their lives. their life’. Also, many ‘conclusions’ from the slides would have been previously untested hypotheses, the company said.

According to Facebook, the study was never intended to draw conclusions about the overall relationship and association between Instagram and a person’s mental health. Instead, there would have been ‘brainstorming’ with teenagers who had negative experiences with the platform, about ‘new ideas’ to ‘help’ such people.

The Wall Street Journal itself has now published four other documents related to Facebook’s large-scale investigation. In addition to the harmfulness of the platform, it also extensively examines the social comparisons with celebrities on the photo app.