If a new guy you’re talking to has a strong selfie habit, it might be best for you to run in the opposite direction.
Men who post more photos of themselves online also score higher on scales of narcissism and psychopathy, according to a new study from Ohio State, published online in the journal Personality and Individual Differences. Researchers even looked at dudes who edit their selfies before posting them, who scored high on both narcissism and self-objectification (a measurement of how highly you value yourself for your appearance).Now, it’s kind of a no-brainer that posting selfies is narcissistic. But the more interesting finding is how selfie-snapping relates to psychopathy.
Jesse Fox, lead author of the study and assistant professor of communication at Ohio State University, noted that these results don’t mean that men who post selfies are definitely psychopaths or narcissists. The study subjects scored higher than average, but still in the “normal” range — i.e. not quite serial killer status. You also shouldn’t freak out if you find out your dude has been filtering the hell out of his Instagram pics: Psychopathy wasn’t shown to be related to editing photos, which researchers confirm makes sense since a key psychopathic characteristic is impulsivity. But do you really want to be with a dude who’s more focused on how good he looks on Instagram than your dinner conversation? Probably not.
“With the growing use of social networks, everyone is more concerned with their appearance. That means self-objectification may become a bigger problem for men, as well as for women,” Fox said in a press release. And it becomes a vicious cycle: We objectify ourselves by posting, get a decent number of likes, which makes us want to post even more pics to keep getting the responses we want.Fox noted that her follow-up work will look at how these results probably hold true for women, too. Maybe our generation is really just a bunch of self-objectifying psychopaths, after all.