Social media making forgetting romantic breakups difficult: Study | HT Tech

Social media making forgetting romantic breakups difficult: Study

The proliferation of social media has made getting over a romantic breakup a bigger chore than in the bygone era, even though digital photos and emails can be deleted in no time.

By:ANI
| Updated on: May 10 2013, 16:41 IST

The proliferation of social media has made getting over a romantic breakup a bigger chore than in the bygone era, even though digital photos and emails can be deleted in no time.


According to a study, ubiquitous digital records of a once beloved keep lurking on Facebook, tumblr, and flicker, makes it difficult to forget painful memories.

You may be interested in

MobilesTablets Laptops
28% OFF
Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra 5G
  • Green
  • 12 GB RAM
  • 256 GB Storage
Google Pixel 8 Pro
  • Obsidian
  • 12 GB RAM
  • 128 GB Storage
Vivo X100 Pro 5G
  • Asteroid Black
  • 16 GB RAM
  • 512 GB Storage
Apple iPhone 15 Plus
  • Black
  • 6 GB RAM
  • 128 GB Storage

Steve Whittaker, a psychology professor at UC Santa Cruz who specializes in human-computer interaction, said people are keeping huge collections of digital possessions, and there has been little exploration of the negative role of digital possessions when people want to forget aspects of their lives.

Also read
Looking for a smartphone? To check mobile finder click here.

In a paper, 'Design for Forgetting: Disposing of Digital Possessions after a Breakup,' Whittaker and co-author Corina Sas, of Lancaster University, examine the challenges of digital possessions and their disposal after a romantic breakup. Sas worked on the research as a visiting professor at UCSC.

Digital possessions include photos, messages, music, and video stored across multiple devices such as computers, tablets, phones, and cameras. Their pervasiveness 'creates problems during a breakup, as people 'inhabit' their digital space where photos and music constantly remind them about their prior relationship, the study states.

In interviews with 24 young people between the ages of 19 and 34, Whittaker and Sas found that digital possessions after a breakup are often evocative and upsetting, leading to distinct disposal strategies. Twelve of the subjects were deleters; eight were keepers, and four others were selective disposers.

Disposal is made more difficult today because digital possessions are in vast collections spread across multiple devices, applications, web-services, and platforms, the study further states.

Whittaker and Sas propose that software solutions might help scrub cyberspace of painful memories, for instance automatic 'harvesting' using facial recognition, machine learning or entity extraction.

Catch all the Latest Tech News, Mobile News, Laptop News, Gaming news, Wearables News , How To News, also keep up with us on Whatsapp channel,Twitter, Facebook, Google News, and Instagram. For our latest videos, subscribe to our YouTube channel.

First Published Date: 10 May, 16:36 IST
NEXT ARTICLE BEGINS