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Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles said Twitter, Instagram show a 'highlight reel' of the world, not reality

  • Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles said social media sites can give people a distorted and demoralizing view of reality.
  • The Philadelphia Eagles quarterback said sites such as Twitter and Facebook's Instagram unit can lead users to think their lives aren't as good as those of others.
  • Foles' comments come as more research — including some done by Facebook — has revealed negative emotional effects from certain types of social media use.
Quarterback Nick Foles of the Philadelphia Eagles
Getty Images
Quarterback Nick Foles of the Philadelphia Eagles

Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles has joined the growing list of people saying excessive social media use can be bad for them.

The Philadelphia Eagles quarterback, in a post-Super Bowl speech earlier this week, said sites such as Twitter and Facebook's Instagram unit can lead users to think their own lives aren't as good as those of others.

"I think in our society today, Instagram, Twitter, it's a highlight reel. It's all the good things. And then when you look at it, when you think like, 'wow,' when you have a rough day, 'My life's not as good as that,' you think you're failing."

Foles proposed an alternative.

"I think the big thing is don't be afraid to fail," Foles said. "Failure is a part of life. It's a part of building character and growing. Without failure, who would you be? I wouldn't be up here if I hadn't fallen thousands of times, made mistakes."

Twitter and Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Foles' comments come as more research — including some done by Facebook — has revealed negative emotional effects from certain types of social media use.

In its research, Facebook found that while sharing and engaging with others on its site can boost positive emotional feelings, passively consuming content on the site can have the opposite effect.

Last week a group of consumer advocates in a letter urged Facebook to shut down the version of its Messenger app targeted at kids.

In their letter, the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood cited several studies that revealed heavy social media use among teens has been linked to significantly higher rates of depression, and that users are more likely to think they are less happy than their young peers who use social media less often.