Envy that friend of yours who has more than 500 Facebook friends? You have no reason to be. Because when it comes to real friendships, he may have as many or even lesser friends than you. Don’t believe us? Then you need to believe this study conducted by the Oxford University. The study reveals that out of every 150 friends you have on Facebook, you can count on only four.
All in all it may not come as a surprise for us considering we add people on our Facebook page to stay in touch and not necessarily be friends but still reading it like this, makes us a bit uncomfortable.
According to the study, when asked how many “genuine” friends the participants thought they had on Facebook, the average came out as 27.6%. When asked how many could they depend on in times of emotional or social crisis, the number came back as an average of 4.1, with another 14 friends that they would expect to some kind of sympathy.
Robin Dunbar, the professor of evolutionary psychology who led the research had this to say about maintaining friendships. “Friendships, in particular, have a natural decay rate in the absence of contact, and social media may well function to slow down the rate of decay.
However, that alone may not be sufficient to prevent friendships eventually dying naturally if they are not occasionally reinforced by face-to-face interaction.”
So, if you really don’t want to lose those handfuls of ‘real’ friends, pick your phone, call them and meet them over a cup of coffee or a game of football or just for catching up. Don’t forget, real people need real people to make this life real. You can’t go on living life on your Facebook page or wall. So get up and take note of those real friends otherwise they too will be just a number on your friends list!