Online Media Use Could Be Strongly Influenced By Our Genes

Posted: Jan 24 2017, 1:16pm CST | by , in News | Latest Science News

Online Media Use Could be Strongly Influenced by Our Genes
By comparing identical twins (who share 100 per cent of their genes) and non-identical twins (who share 50 per cent of their genes), the researchers were able to estimate the relative contribution of genes and environment on individual differences in engagement with a range of online media, including games for entertainment and education, as well as time spent on chat rooms, instant messaging platforms and Facebook. Credit: Getty Images
  • Online media use such as social networking and gaming shows strong genetic influence

Apparently, the compulsive usage of online media could be hardwired in our genes.

Online activities that introverts enjoy such as gaming and networking may have a genetic origin. As such vicarious experiences on the Internet proceed to take over much of the leisure time of many people, it seems they may have a crucial function in the grand scheme of things.

People of all age groups, from youngsters to adults and senior citizens frequent the Net for the sake of entertainment and information not to mention some connectivity with like-minded individuals.

Yet people are divided on the reasons they come online and what they get from it. Regarding this many of the researchers took to the field to investigate the ins and outs of online activities. It all boils down to genetics.

The research work got published in the journal PLOS ONE.

8500 teenage twins were studied in the survey that took place. Identical and fraternal twins were observed on an intensive basis. They happen to share 100% and 50% of their genes respectively. The role that genes and environment played in the overall scheme of things was thus known with a high degree of accuracy.

Time spent in chatting, messaging and on such forums as Facebook was noted down scrupulously. Entertainment and education got 37% and 34% of the genetic drift respectively.

As for gaming and networking, they earned 39% and 24% of the heritability statistics on an individual basis. The differences that were seen in kids was due to genes more than the surroundings.

Environment was a big factor though and normally accounted for two-thirds of the differences between various people. It was a case of different strokes for different folks.

Among the environmental factors could be included use of various channels within the same platform and different degrees of monitoring of online activity by one’s guardians.

The point is that people get the media forms they deserve. It is not a case of mankind being a passive consumer of online media. Rather each person chooses the channels he or she likes to go into as far as online activity is concerned.

The correlation between genes and environment is a complex subject. There are no pet formulas or cut-and-dried theories regarding this. We are not powerless before the media machine.

Rather DNA is where it is at. Our genetic heritage shapes our online media choices in a very decisive and powerful manner. The Internet after all is not your children’s babysitter.

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
Sumayah Aamir (Google+) has deep experience in analyzing the latest trends.




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