Rich people look at others less, and viewing other people's selfies makes us unhappyA new study found that rich people look at others less. Interestingly enough, another scientific analysis discovered that viewing other people’s selfies makes us unhappy. Both studies are lead to the same conclusions.

Social status determines how people behave in a croud

In the first study, psychological scientist Pia Dietze from the University of New York found that wealthy people pay less attention to others than individuals of a lower financial standing.

Dietze and her colleague Eric Knowles suggested that it is the social class that affects how dependent we are on other people’s opinions. Rich people are not worried how people judge them. Thus, they spend less time looking at strangers around them.

To confirm their hypothesis, researchers recruited 61 people who were told they are “testing new Google Glass” gadgets. While participants were walking through the streets of New York, the high-tech eyewear recorded what they were looking at, Science Daily reports.

Initially, the participants completed a questionnaire which helped to gauge their social status. As one of the questions, people answered what social class they belong to:

  • Poor
  • Working class
  • Middle class
  • Upper middle class
  • Upper class

After the experiment, a group of independent experts checked what the participants were looking at and for how long.

Dietze and Knowles examined the results of measurements and arrived at 2 conclusions:

  1. One’s social class does not affect how often a person looks at others around him or her.
  2. The lower social layer a person belongs to, the longer he or she looks at strangers around.

This, it appear that people from to the lower strata of society pay more attention to others.

How a place in society determines our behaviour in real life as well as in virtual one

A social research discovered that people from higher layers of society spend less time on looking at others.

Viewing other people’s selfies makes us unhappy

Graduate students Ruoxu Wang and Fan Yang from the University of Penn State concluded another survey.

They decided to find out whether viewing other people’s selfies has any psychological impact on a person.

The graduate students focused their attention on people who do not post photos in social networks but view other people’s updates.

After conducting an online survey, the researchers concluded that frequent viewing of selfies lowers people’s self-esteem and their level of happiness and life satisfaction.

As the students noted, when looking at other people’s happy photos, we begin to think that our own life is less interesting.

Uploading one’s own photos didn’t show any significant psychological impact.


In real life as well as in virtual one, people who are less fortunate tend to pay more attention to others and their lives. At the same time, such a behaviour contributes to a further decline in self-esteem.

Does this mean that such behaviour is rather pointless? It makes us compare our lives with others, which can be stressful. Maybe it’s better to shift our focus to moving ahead with our own lives?


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It is probably true finding. Very poor people have such habits to look excessively often on other persons. Thus it seems that I am mentally and spiritually rich already. …. And soon to become rich materially. I don´t know if tens-thousander is considered rich at the moment. However, eager to became at least houndreds-thousander. Although I found out that nothing really has any meaning in a human life, as only having children will give you somewhat feel of immortality and death-overcoming. But in the end for yourself. Only for somebody else. Let’s believe the Bible is indeed true and JHVH… Read more »

It makes sense. On social media people often look prettier than they really are, and it seems they don’t have to work and are on holiday all the time. But most of them are just normal people with normal jobs, and they too have bad hair days; they are just better at keeping up appearances. 😉


It is so true! I have met a lot of people who were constantly thinking about other people’s opinion. I was among them. And this obsession hurts our mental health. That’s why I don’t have Instagram. We have to develop ourselves without looking back for others.


uh. DUH. Get off the interwebs and actually LIVE your own life


Well, when I go for a walk, I can’t but stare around me. You know, sometimes it can be a bit monotonous to walk by the same routes, that’s why I look at other people for a change. By the way, I consider my family poor. After reading this article it suddenly came to me that looking at people around I really compare them with me. However, it isn’t stressful to me.

Really interesting topic, that maked me open this link. And actually this issue is conected to many of us. May be it is shame for us to admit that “yeah, I look around me, I look at the people, and it’s interesting and informative for me to know what they do, what they eat, with whom they are talking every day”. But it’s normal I think, cause we are living in the society, we can’t ignor each other… and the “peeping through the keyhole” can help us to recognise what we have to do to realize our ideas, dreams etc.… Read more »

I think it deals with an instinct. Poorer people feel that they need to adapt themselves to the environment because they are not so independent in terms of money, social status etc. So, it’s natural.


I completely agree that viewing successful people’s selfies can affect our mood and psychological health. People see many other happy faces and feel very unhappy if they have some problems at that moment. As for me I don’t post my photos on the Internet but I view photos of other people.


It is kind of true that we become upset while viewing other people’s “ideal life” photos. It happens to me sometimes. But then I meet these people in real life and realize that it is just a show and these guys just try their darndest to get likes instead of enjoying real life. And that’s when my self-esteem is back!


I know people, who can not watch Instagram without negative comments towards their “friends”. I personally believe, that envy is weakness. Instead of being jealous of someone’s athletic shape, go and work out! I am usually glad for my friends having interesting experience. Moreover, I get fresh ideas and goals from their photos. So, may be, the attitude matters.