Social Networking Use and RescueTime: The issue of Engagement

in ACM Digital Library, Conference paper (text), Ubicomp'14 Workshop: Disasters in Personal Informatics


The dramatic rise in the use of social network sites (SNS) has resulted in a number of users feeling stressed about the extent of their personal use. Previous work has established that daily retrospective estimations of SNS use and access to RescueTime not only improve accuracy of estimations but also reduce perceived stress. The present study aimed to extend this by also exploring the influence of prospective estimations on stress and perceived time management. However, the study was thwarted by incredibly low engagement with RescueTime and consequently, no improvement in estimation accuracy and no reduction in stress. This indicates substantial individual differences in engagement and a requirement for external sources of motivation for using personal informatics, beyond the tasks of the study.