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Unlike social media, Fortnite actually makes you feel better

Survey says that unlike Facebook and Snapchat, Fortnite helps players forget their real-world problems.

Unlike social media, Fortnite actually makes you feel better
[Photo: Alex Haney/Unsplash]

As Fortnite starts to resemble a new kind of social network, it’s eating into the time that players spend with other social media–and other forms of entertainment for that matter. A survey by National Research Group says weekly Fortnite players now spend 21% of their free time with the game, and spend 3% less time on social media, which now accounts for 16% of players’ free time.

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[Image: courtesy of National Research Group]
Beyond just being an enjoyable first-person shooter, Fortnite just makes players feel better compared to social media. Survey respondents said the game was more likely to help them forget about real-life problems, express themselves without fear of bullying, act on feelings they can’t in everyday life, and increase their self-confidence.

Players also said the game makes them feel like they’re not alone and helps them cope with stress. (One counterpoint not mentioned in the survey: Some Fortnite players say they feel pressure to spend money on costumes and other cosmetic items to avoid being harassed in the game.)

[Image: courtesy of National Research Group]
Despite all the good feelings, Fortnite still has some catching up to do with social media in terms of usage, at least for older crowds. Among kids ages 10-12, 53% reported playing Fortnite at least once a week, versus 38% for both Facebook and Instagram, but social networking is far more popular among other age groups. Among kids 13-17, Instagram was used weekly by 64%, and Facebook was used weekly by 53%, versus 33% for Fortnite. The 18-24 age group reported 64% weekly Instagram use, 58% weekly Facebook use, and just 19% weekly Fortnite play.

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About the author

Jared Newman covers apps and technology from his remote Cincinnati outpost. He also writes two newsletters, Cord Cutter Weekly and Advisorator.

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