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Facebook Exaggeration is 'Human Nature,' Filmmaker Says

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A still from Shaun Higton's short film 'What's on your mind?'
A still from Shaun Higton's short film 'What's on your mind?'HigtonBros via YouTube

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A filmmaker whose "ordinary life" seemed dull on Facebook has racked up almost 7 million YouTube views after highlighting how social media "lends itself to exaggeration." California native Shaun Higton admits that watching the seemingly "glorious" lives of friends in his news feed left him irritated. His 2.5-minute film "What's On Your Mind?" explores the addiction to "likes" and how online selves are often different from reality.

“I think we have this human nature thing where we kind of, make it a little better than it is, just exaggerate just a little bit and I think that sort of thing can get out of hand, especially with social media," the Norway-based Higton told NBC News. His short film premiered last month at the American Pavilion Emerging Filmmaker Showcase in Cannes, France. It follows a study by two German universities that last year found that one out of three people "reported predominantly negative feelings, such as frustration" after visiting Facebook.

- Katie Jia Xin Wong

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