Facebook a factor in third of British divorces, says survey

A third of British divorces in 2011 named Facebook as a factor, according to a new survey.

A third of British divorces name Facebook as a factor. Thirty-three per cent of divorce petitions in 2011 include the word Facebook, according to new figures.

The most common reasons for unhappy hubbies and wrathful wives to include Facebook in their divorce proceedings are inappropriate messages to members of the opposite sex, comments posted about each other, and Facebook friends reporting when a spouse has been up to no good.

Now of course, there's nothing inherently naughty about Facebook -- it's the behaviour of the people using it that leads to problems. When an incriminating photo reveals a significant other playing away, you don't blame the camera, you blame the straying spouse who couldn't keep it in their pants.

And Facebook activity is usually only one factor in the sad spousal split, perhaps proving a real-life infidelity with an incriminating message.

Facebook is simply the latest tool for husbands and wives to indulge a wandering eye, make a snide comment about each other, or pay too much attention to an ex.

But sneaky spouses also risk being caught if they're friends with the wrong person, or if they forget to log out of their account, or if a message goes to the wrong person. So if you philanderers don't want to end up in dee eye vee oh are see ee, check your privacy settings and remember to log out.

The survey was carried out by nuptial-nullifying service Divorce-Online, which checked 5,000 divorce petitions. The Facebook figure is up from 20 per cent citing the social network in similar research in 2009.

Twitter was named in 20 petitions, with some separating spouses complaining about their other half making comments about exes.

Has Facebook or Twitter ever landed you in hot water with your other half? Can technology and matters of the heart ever mix? Tell us your story in the comments or on our Facebook page. Oh, and for everyone who had a Christmas wedding: Mazel tov!

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About the author

Rich Trenholm is a senior editor at CNET where he covers everything from phones to bionic implants. Based in London since 2007, he has travelled the world seeking out the latest and best consumer technology for your enjoyment.

 

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