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Alcohol references on undergraduate males' Facebook profiles.

Research paper by Katie G KG Egan, Megan A MA Moreno

Indexed on: 17 Mar '11Published on: 17 Mar '11Published in: American journal of men's health



Abstract

Perceived peer alcohol use is a predictor of consumption in college males; frequent references to alcohol on Facebook may encourage alcohol consumption. Content analysis of college males' Facebook profiles identified references to alcohol. The average age of 225 identified profiles was 19.9 years. Alcohol references were present on 85.3% of the profiles; the prevalence of alcohol was similar across each undergraduate grade. The average number of alcohol references per profile was 8.5 but increased with undergraduate year (p = .003; confidence interval = 1.5, 7.5). Students who were of legal drinking age referenced alcohol 4.5 times more than underage students, and an increase in number of Facebook friends was associated with an increase in displayed alcohol references (p < .001; confidence interval = 0.009, 0.02). Facebook is widely used in the college population; widespread alcohol displays on Facebook may influence social norms and cause increases in male college students' alcohol use.