Abstract: Social relationships are assumed to be among the most important sources of well-being. However, previous studies showing that objectively measured social network size contributes to well-being have not included personality traits. We investigated, in a sample of Facebook users (N = 4701), whether the effects of Extraversion on well-being are mediated by a larger network. Although network size was initially associated with heightened well-being, this association was rendered insignificant when Extraversion was controlled for. Extraversion had a direct positive effect on ratings of Life Satisfaction and Happiness, but none of this effect was mediated by Facebook network size. The previously reported on associations between social network size and well-being could, at least in some contexts, be an artifact of Extraversion.
Browsing profiles at social networking sites or online dating sites, any person will assess quite well the level of Extraversion of the other persons and not well the other personality traits.