Facebook connects us but for those who struggle with social interactions the connections can amplify disconnects with main stream society. In an interesting piece on NPR featuring research from Ontario in Canada researchers found that:
People with low self-esteem posted far more negative updates than those with high self-esteem. Forest says they described a host of unhappy sentiments, from seemingly minor things like having a terrible day or being frustrated with class schedules to more extreme feelings of rage and sorrow
The effect was compounded by the perception of others on Facebook who disliked the type of negative comments, worsening the isolation. What does not appear in the piece but is in the actual broadcast with an interview with one student who had deleted his post he made a telling point, especially relative to middle school and high school age students. As he put it, at a time when children are moving away from the family, friends are more important and Facebook amplified isolation. It was not just about being "friended". The simple action of being tagged in a picture highlighted to you (and your peers) that you were "there". And for those that were not that they had not been invited. It used to be occasional discovery of exclusion from events - now your appearance, or more importantly lack of appearance, highlighted to the world your exclusion further disconnecting you from your peers.
So that makes me wonder how great an idea is for younger children in their formative years - is the age limit (ignored and certainly not policed) of 12 high enough?