# Statistics Question

1.  H1 is provided on p.85 of the article.  What would be H0 for this study?2.  Of all participants in the study (described in the Participants section), what percentage were Instagram users?  Provide the number of Instagram users and total number of participants in the answer.3.  In Table 1, what does the frequency value of “13” represent?  Variable names from the table alone will not be sufficient.4.  According to Table 1, how many people with public accounts had personal information on their bio?  How many did not?5.  Of the 11 Grandiose variables listed in Table 2, which have scores that are negatively skewed?  (OK, I can hear you groaning!  Hint:  There are 4 of them; refer back to your Measures of Central Tendency handout/notes to refresh as to which should be larger, the mean or the median).6.  Of the 11 Grandiose variables listed in Table 2, which has the lowest variability?7.  In the Correlations results of Section 3.7, which Instagram behavior had the highest correlation with grandiose narcissism?  With vulnerable narcissism?  (Hint: they are in para. 2 of the Correlations section; look for rho values).8.  In Figure 2, which two variables had the strongest correlation?  The weakest?  (This figure has correlation values on the top part of the diagonal; along the diagonal are the histograms for each variable and below the diagonal are the scatterplots for each relationship.)  Social Networking, 2016, 5, 82-92
Published Online April 2016 in SciRes. http://www.scirp.org/journal/sn
http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/sn.2016.52009
An Exploratory Study of the Relationships
between Narcissism, Self-Esteem and
Instagram Use
Olga Paramboukis, Jason Skues, Lisa Wise
Department of Psychological Sciences, Faculty of Health, Arts and Design, Swinburne University of Technology,
Hawthorn, Australia
Received 21 March 2016; accepted 25 April 2016; published 28 April 2016
Abstract
The aim of this mixed-methods exploratory study was to examine the relationship between narcissism, self-esteem and Instagram usage and was motivated by unsubstantiated media claims of
increasing narcissism due to excessive use of social networks. A sample of 200 participants responded to an online survey which consisted of the Five Factor Narcissism Inventory (FFNI), the
Rosenberg Self-Esteem scale, and the Instagram Usage, Behaviours, and Affective Responses Questionnaire (IUBARQ) constructed specifically for the purposes of this study. There was only weak
evidence for any relationship between narcissism and Instagram usage, suggesting that media
concerns are somewhat exaggerated. However the negative correlation between vulnerable narcissism and self-esteem warrants further examination.
Keywords
Narcissism, Vulnerable Narcissism, Grandiose Narcissism, Instagram, Self-Esteem, Social Media
1. Narcissism, Self-Esteem and Social Media
Recent research has suggested that young people today are more narcissistic compared to previous generations
[1]. This statistical increase in scores on narcissism measures has coincided with the introduction, uptake, and
the simultaneous increase in narcissism and social media use and note that self-reported narcissism tends to be
associated with different motivations and patterns of usage for social media [2]-[10]. Yet few studies have investigated whether social networking sites other than Facebook or Twitter are related to high levels of selfHow to cite this paper: Paramboukis, O., Skues, J. and Wise, L. (2016) An Exploratory Study of the Relationships between
Narcissism, Self-Esteem and Instagram Use. Social Networking, 5, 82-92. http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/sn.2016.52009
O. Paramboukis et al.
reported narcissism. This study contributes to the current research by investigating how Instagram, a social networking site focusing on editing, posting, and commenting on images, is associated with the personality trait of
narcissism.
1.1. Measures of Narcissism
Although narcissism has been investigated for around 40 years (see [11] for a review), there is still ongoing debate about whether narcissism should be conceptualised as a psychiatrically diagnosed personality disorder or a
subclinical personality trait [12]-[14]. Narcissism has been viewed from a social and personality psychology
perspective as a trait comprising multiple dimensions shaped from the earlier clinical construct. A common distinction in both the clinical and social/personality psychology literature is between grandiose and vulnerable
narcissism [15]. The grandiose dimension refers to traits such as exhibitionism, callousness, extraversion, manipulativeness, superiority, aggression, indifference and seeking of acclaim, whereas the vulnerable dimension is
believed to reflect feelings of inadequacy, emptiness and shame, reactive anger, helplessness, hypervigilance to
insult, excessive shyness and interpersonal avoidance [16] [17]. In general, more emphasis has been placed on
the grandiose aspect of narcissism compared to the vulnerable aspect. The current study defines narcissism from
the social and personality perspective as a sub-clinical trait with two factors, grandiose and vulnerable narcissism respectively.
1.2. Narcissism and Self-Esteem
Some researchers have posited significant conceptual overlap between narcissism and self-esteem with individuals high in both traits having a higher opinion of themselves [18]-[20]. In contrast, others have argued that,
while self-esteem is considered to be an intrapersonal trait, narcissism is primarily interpersonal [21]. Narcissistic individuals may present a false mask of high self-esteem, scoring high on explicit measures of self-esteem,
but showing much lower scores on implicit measures of the same trait [21].
Another possible explanation for the equivocal findings relates to the notion of different aspects of the self,
e.g., agentic versus communal self-views [18] [19]. Campbell et al. [19] found that narcissists and people with
high self-esteem report positive, albeit distinct, self-views. That is, narcissists perceive themselves as better than
average primarily on traits reflecting agency (e.g., competence), whereas individuals with high self-esteem hold
superior beliefs regarding both agency and communal traits. In this regard, the self-regulatory strategies employed by narcissists involve seeking attention and admiration by comparing themselves to others, and by defending their competence to others. Given the multiple alternative explanations relating to the relationship between narcissism and self-esteem, this study will contribute to this research by exploring the relationship between these two constructs in the context of social network use.
1.3. Narcissism and Social Networking Sites
Several researchers have investigated the relationship between narcissism and social media with studies ranging
from testing simple correlations between narcissism scores and basic usage and descriptive data, to studies that
have examined how different dimensions of narcissism relate to motivations and behaviours associated with
different social network sites including MySpace, Facebook, and Twitter. Not surprisingly, the findings have
been mixed. The early studies focused primarily on Facebook and reported significant correlations between narcissism and time per day spent using Facebook, number of Facebook friends, numbers of photos and the selection of specific profile photos, and status updates [3] [8]. Bergman et al. [2] did not find narcissism to be related
to actual social media usage, but instead that it was positively associated with motivations such as wanting to
have a lot of online friends, believing others are interested in what they are doing, and wanting to show others
what they were doing. This highlights that researchers need to look beyond simplistic quantitative variables in
relation to social media use.
In one of the first studies to separate narcissism into different factors and relate these factors to Facebook use,
Carpenter [4] found Grandiose-Exhibitionism to be associated with self-promoting behaviours, number of
Facebook friends, seeking social support and retaliating against perceived mean comments, while Entitlement/
Exploitativeness was related to more anti-social behaviours such as retaliation and checking up on whether he or
she is being talked about by others.
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Panek et al. [10] also examined how different aspects of narcissism were related to Facebook and Twitter use
in a study of both undergraduate students and adults. For university students, exhibitionism was related to time
spent and number of Facebook status posts, and entitlement was related to time spent per day. For adults, superiority and authority were related to Facebook checking, and vanity was associated with Facebook posting and
Twitter checking. According to Panek et al., university students use Twitter as a “technologically augmented
megaphone” that allows them to demonstrate their superiority to others. For adults, it appears to be Facebook
that is used in this manner. Davenport et al. [5] also examined the role of narcissism and motives in relation to
associated with narcissistic university students for whom tweeting was the preferred mode of communication.
However, it was more important for narcissists in both samples to have more Facebook friends than Twitter followers, which is probably a reflection of the different affordances and relationships with people in the audience
for both of the social network sites. Ong et al. [9] also found in their sample of secondary school students that
after controlling for extraversion, narcissism was positively associated with self-generated content on Facebook
(e.g., profile picture selection etc), but not system-generated content (e.g., number of friends or photos etc).
However, Ong et al. acknowledged that they did not consider privacy settings, which can limit the size and intended audience.
It may be that the expression of narcissistic behaviour through social networking sites is more of a by-product
of a society that is becoming increasingly more “self-centred”, and social media merely provide another arena in
which narcissistic tendencies can be displayed. Alternatively, social media may facilitate, encourage and applaud narcissistic behaviours in a problematic spiral that magnifies the degree of narcissism even further. A further possibility is that this association is merely the result of changes in the way people respond to narcissism
and self-esteem scale items on the respective scales (i.e., with less false modesty than in previous generations),
rather than a actual change in the nature of the personality traits themselves.
1.4. Instagram
Instagram is a photo and video sharing social networking site that is becoming increasingly popular among
young people1. Instagram prompts users to edit photos using inbuilt, easily-applied filters and special effects,
before posting these images onto the Instagram site [22]. Instagram differs from Facebook and Twitter through
being entirely focused on images. According to Instagram Press [22], 300 million of its users have an Instagram
account that they regularly use (monthly). There is also an average of 70 million photos being posted daily
worldwide, attracting 2.5 billion “likes” [22]. Nonetheless, in spite of its widespread usage and specific focus on
posting images, there is a dearth of research on Instagram, and how it relates to narcissism.
Based on the integration of previous research on other social networking sites and the affordances that Instagram provides to users, it is argued that narcissistic tendencies such as attention-seeking and exhibitionism may
be facilitated by Instagram usage due to its specific image-based applications and functions. Firstly, Instagram
facilitates the selection and editing of photos that can be used to make a specific impression to others by glamorizing their portrayal of themselves or their lives. Such behaviour aligns with grandiose narcissism traits such as
attention-seeking, vanity, self-promotion and exhibitionism. Secondly, “liking” and “commenting” functions are
available on Instagram for followers and do not require the formation of a deeper relationship (which may be
achieved via instant messaging functions). This aspect of the site may greatly appeal to highly narcissistic individuals (both grandiose and vulnerable) as they tend to not retain close relationships despite their desire for social contact [23] [24]. Thirdly, “hash tagging” may also be used as a form of self-promotion by both highly vulnerable and grandiose narcissistic individuals as a user may choose to hash tag their photo with popular search
terms with the intention of their photo being seen by a larger audience.
1.5. The Current Study
The current study aims to explore the relationships between narcissism and its subtypes, self-esteem, and Instagram use. The main motivation for the study was to investigate the relationship between narcissism and social
1
Although typically considered a separate social networking site in its own right, it is important to highlight that Instagram is often linked to
Facebook and Twitter, which means that content and communication on these sites is not necessarily mutually exclusive and will depend on
whether one has linked the respective profiles. Indeed since this study was undertaken, Facebook has purchased Instagram, making the
boundary between them even more difficult to define.
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O. Paramboukis et al.
media use by targeting a social networking site (i.e., Instagram) that specifically facilitates the type of behaviour
that has been shown to be associated with narcissism in previous research (i.e., photo-sharing).
H1: Individuals who score high on narcissism will engage in more Instagram behaviours.
We anticipate that some aspects of narcissism may be related to self-esteem and that both narcissism and
self-esteem may influence patterns of Instagram use. These relationships are best investigated as research questions, in keeping with the exploratory nature of the study.
RQ1: How do different aspects of narcissism relate to self-esteem and Instagram use?
RQ2: Is there a difference in the pattern of Instagram use for individuals who are classified as grandiose narcissists compared to those classified as vulnerable narcissists?
2. Method
2.1. Participants
After preliminary data screening, during which participants with missing data were deleted listwise, a total of
200 participants completed the study. There were 148 female and 52 male participants, with ages ranging from
18 to 51 (M = 22.41, Med = 21, SD = 6.15). Of these participants, only 154 had Instagram accounts, and the
majority of data will be reported from the demographic of interest, constituting 141 of the 154 Instagram users
who were under the age of 26.
2.2. Measures
Five Factor Narcissism Inventory (FFNI [25]). The Five Factor Narcissism Inventory is a 148-item narcissism
personality trait measure that was designed from a theoretical framework that views narcissistic traits as maladaptive extensions of traits from the Five Factor Model of personality. The FFNI contains 15 different facets
which form two subtypes of narcissism, namely Grandiose Narcissism (Indifference, Exhibitionism, Thrill
Seeking, Authoritativeness, Grandiose Fantasies, Manipulativeness, Exploitativeness, Entitlement, Arrogance,
Lack of Empathy and Acclaim Seeking) and Vulnerable Narcissism (Reactive Anger, Shame, Need for Admiration and Cynicism/Distrust). Participants were asked to respond on a five point Likert scale ranging from (1)
Strongly Disagree to (5) Strongly Agree with higher scores corresponding to more of a particular trait.
Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSS [26]). Participants completed the Rosenberg self-esteem scale which is a
measure of global self-esteem that consists of 10 items which are measured on a four point Likert scale ranging
from (1) Strongly Disagree to (4) Strongly Agree [26].
Instagram Usage, Behaviour, and Emotional Reactions Questionnaire (IUBRQ). Participants completed
the Instagram Usage, Behaviour, and Emotional Reactions Questionnaire (IUBRQ), which was designed for the
purpose of the current study. Since no specific scale is currently available to operationalise Instagram usage, the
following questionnaire was created to investigate only the areas of interest in this study, which included frequency of usage, frequency of Instagram-specific behaviours and the attitudes and affective reactions towards
Instagram usage. The selection of the content for this scale was formed via informal focus groups with a small
cohort of research students from our laboratory, along observations of online forums regarding behaviours on
Instagram undertaken by the first author.
Instagram Usage. This section comprised 12 questions ranging from open-ended estimates of time or frequency to yes/no responses or 4-point likert scale responses.
Instagram Behaviours. This section consisted of 16 questions relating to ways of interacting with Instagram.
Participants responded on a five point scale (1 = Never; 2 = Rarely; 3 = Sometimes, 4 = Often; and 5 = Very
Often) based on their recollection of activities over the past month.
Instagram Attitudes. This section consisted of 5 questions relating to motivations for interacting with Instagram. Participants responded on a four point scale (1 = Not at all important; 2 = Slightly important; 3 = Kind of
important; and 4 = Very important).
Instagram Emotional Reactions. The section consisted of 3 open-ended questions where participants were
invited to respond to questions about how they characterised some aspects of Instagram usage, and also how
they emotionally reacted to positive and potentially negative feedback they may receive on Instagram posts.
2.2. Procedure
Participants were invited to complete a 30-minute online survey which consisted of the FFNI, the RSES, and the
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O. Paramboukis et al.
IBURQ. Participants completed the survey at a time and location that was convenient to them, and they were
provided with a debriefing statement immediately upon the completion of the survey. The study was approved
by Swinburne University’s ethical review committee. Data were analysed using Microsoft Excel, SPSS Version
23.0, and R Version 3.2.3.
3. Results and Discussion
3.1. Instagram and Other Social Networks
Of the 200 participants recruited for the study, 154 had Instagram accounts, of whom 122 were female and 32
were male. Of the 154 participants with Instagram accounts, 62 participants linked their Instagram account to
another social network. Of these, 53 linked their Instagram account to Facebook, 9 to Twitter, 8 to Tumblr.
the remaining 46 non-Instagram users reported having a Facebook account, and only 5 did not report any use of
social networking sites at all.
Within our sample, it appeared that Facebook was still the most popular social networking site, and that Instagram was often used in conjunction with other social media sites. Since our data were collected for this study,
Facebook has purchased Instagram, underscoring the transient nature of usage/behaviour patterns for specific
social network sites.
3.2. Instagram Privacy Settings
We asked participants three questions relating to privacy: 1) was their account publically available?; 2) did they
accept follower requests from people unknown to them?; and 3) did their bio page contain personal information?
(see Table 1). While it might be expected that users would maintain consistency between different privacy settings (for example, keeping their content private, accepting follower requests only from people they know and
restricting personal information in their bio), this was not always the case. For example, as can be seen from
Table 1, 24 participants who kept their accounts private accepted follower requests from strangers. The inconsistency in privacy settings is more likely to reflect a lack of knowledge of account settings and how they operate than any deliberate strategy for information dissemination.
3.3. Instagram Usage, Behaviours and Emotional Reactions Questionnaire
The vast majority of the sample of Instagram users were university students under the age of 26 (141 of 154 Instagram users) and this was the demographic targeted for our analysis of relationships between personality traits
and Instagram behaviours and attitudes. The IUBRQ survey attempted to quantify aspects of Instagram usage in
terms of frequency of interaction with Instagram, the types of behaviours engaged in through Instagram, and the
motives and attitudes surrounding Instagram interactions.
3.4. Instagram Usage
While half of the participants (51%) visited their Instagram site often or very often, the majority of the sample
posted photos occasionally or rarely (77%). This suggests that the majority of Instagram users are consumers
rather than creators of content.
Table 1. Privacy settings on Instagram: cross-tabulation of participants who accept followers
who are unknown to them, have personal information in their bio sections and have their
accounts publically available.
Accept Unknown
Bio with Personal Info
Account Public
Yes
No
Yes
No
Yes
69
13
33
49
No
24
48
19
53
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O. Paramboukis et al.
3.5. Instagram Behaviours
The Behaviours section of the IUBRQ survey addressed ways in which users could interact via Instagram and
reflects features of Instagram at the time when the research was undertaken.
As can be seen from the top panel of Figure 1, most participants rarely used the Instagram features listed,
consistent with finding that very few Instagram users regularly post photos. The most frequent behaviour was
use of hashtags, which was the only listed behaviour that the majority of Instagram users performed at least
sometimes.
In order to generate possible metrics to capture the degree of interaction with Instagram, a Principal Components Analysis was conducted on the 16 Instagram Behaviour items of the IUBRQ. A one-factor solution was
revealed to be the best fitting model in which 13 of the 16 items had primary loadings above 0.3 on a single factor and explained 25% of the variance. On the basis of this analysis, we compiled a single Instagram Behaviours
score from all the items of this section for use in the correlational analyses with personality traits.
3.6. Instagram Attitudes
The Attitudes section of the IUBRQ survey addressed attitudes towards Instagram usage. As can be seen from
the bottom panel of Figure 1, being portrayed and recognised in a positive light was important to the majority of
participants. However it should be noted that positive acclaim was not purely reflected through getting “likes”,
something that 35% of the participants did not find particularly important. Achieving symmetry in the layout of
images on the screen was also not particularly important to most participants.
3.7. Narcissism, Self-Esteem and Instagram Behaviours
In order to test whether narcissism relates to self-esteem and Instagram use, summary data were first calculated
for each of the narcissism and self-esteem scales and relevant subscales used in this study and reported in Table
2.
Narcissism. The median values for both grandiose and vulnerable narcissism scores were approximately at
the midpoint of the scoring, with some participants scoring toward the upper limit of possible scores. At the trait
level, the highest-scoring trait was “acclaim seeking” (M = 36.33, SD = 6.85), whilst the lowest scoring trait was
Figure 1. Likert scales for each item on the Instagram Behaviours and Instagram
Attitudes sections of the IUBARQ.
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O. Paramboukis et al.
Table 2. Means, SDs, medians and ranges for scales and subscales from the FFNI and the
Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale.
Descriptive Statistics
Personality variable
Mean
SD
Median
Range
Indifference
26.90
8.55
26
10 – 49
Exhibitionism
32.35
6.81
33
15 – 49
Thrill seeking
21.13
6.87
21
8 – 36
Arrogance
22.10
6.19
21
10 – 48
Entitlement
20.23
5.41
20
10 – 48
Manipulativeness
24.80
7.16
23
10 – 47
Exploitativeness
20.94
7.29
20
10 – 47
Authoritativeness
31.99
7.62
33
10 – 50
Grandiose fantasies
31.44
7.02
32
11 – 49
Lack of empathy
17.72
5.22
17
10 – 42
Acclaim seeking
36.33
6.85
37
11 – 50
Grandiose Total
285.80
283
155 – 462
Reactive anger
27.53
6.56
28
11 – 46
Shame
31.78
8.12
32
12 – 50
28.39
6.22
28
10 – 44
Distrust
26.46
5.72
27
12 – 39
Vulnerable Total
114.20
116
51 – 168
FFNI Total
400.00
401
269 – 622
Rosenberg Self-Esteem
29.33
29
11 – 39
5.34
“lack of empathy” (M = 17.72, SD = 5.22).
Self-esteem. Self-esteem scores were found to be high in the sample with more than 75% of the sample scoring more than the midpoint of the scale.
Correlations. Spearman’s rank order correlations were used to test the significance of associations between
narcissism, self-esteem, Instagram Behaviours as measured by a composite score from the IUBRQ Behaviours
items and Instagram Attitudes as measured by a composite score from the IUBRQ Attitudes items. As can be
seen in Figure 2, overall narcissism (FFNI Total) did not correlate with self-esteem (RSS). However when narcissism was separated into grandiose and vulnerable dimensions, a weak positive correlation was found between

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