‘I Ain’t Like You’ A Complex Network Model of Digital Narcissism

  • Fakhra JabeenEmail author
  • Charlotte Gerritsen
  • Jan Treur
Conference paper
Part of the Studies in Computational Intelligence book series (SCI, volume 882)


Social media like Twitter or Instagram play a role of fertile ground for self-exhibition, which is used by various narcissists to share their frequent updates reflecting their narcissism. Their belief of saving and assisting others, make them vulnerable to the feedback of others, so their rage is as dangerous as their messiah complex. In this paper, we aim to analyse the behaviour of a narcissist when he is admired or receives negative critics. We designed a complex adaptive mental network model of the process of narcissism based on the theories of neuroscience and psychology including a Hebbian learning principal. The model was validated by analyzing Instagram data.


Narcissistic rage Narcissism Complex mental network 


  1. 1.
    Moon, J.H., Lee, E., Lee, J.-A., Choi, T.R., Sung, Y.: The role of narcissism in self-promotion on Instagram. Pers. Individ. Differences. 101, 22–25 (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Wang, D.: A study of the relationship between narcissism, extraversion, drive for entertainment, and narcissistic behavior on social networking sites. Comput. Hum. Behav. 66, 138–148 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Bushman, B.J., Baumeister, R.F.: Threatened egotism, narcissism, self-esteem, and direct and displaced aggression: does self-love or self-hate lead to violence? J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 75(1), 219 (1998)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Fan, C., Chu, X., Zhang, M., Zhou, Z.: Are narcissists more likely to be involved in cyberbullying? Examining the mediating role of self-esteem. J. Interpers. Violence. 34(15), 3127–3150 (2019)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Fan, Y., Wonneberger, C., Enzi, B., de Greck, M., Ulrich, C., Tempelmann, C., Bogerts, B., Doering, S., Northoff, G.: The narcissistic self and its psychological and neural correlates: an exploratory fMRI study. Psychol. Medicine. 41, 1641–1650 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Neuman, Y.: Computational Personality Analysis: Introduction. Practical Applications and Novel Directions. Springer, Cham (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Olsson, J., Berglund, S., Annett, J.: Narcissism – brain and behavior: self-views and empathy in the narcissistic brain term, University of Skovde (2014)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Daniel, R., Pollmann, S.: A universal role of the ventral striatum in reward-based learning: Evidence from human studies. Neurobiol. Learn. Memory. 114, 90–100 (2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Weger, M., Sandi, C.: High anxiety trait: a vulnerable phenotype for stress-induced depression. Neurosci. Biobehav. Rev. 87, 27–37 (2018)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Sun, P., Wei, S., Wei, X., Wang, J., Zhang, Y., Qiao, M., Wu, J.: Anger emotional stress influences VEGF/VEGFR2 and its induced PI3 K/AKT/mTOR signaling pathway. Neural Plast. 2016, 1–12 (2016)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Schmidt, M.V., Abraham, W.C., Maroun, M., Stork, O., Richter-Levin, G.: Stress-induced metaplasticity: from synapses to behavior. Neuroscience 250, 112–120 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    de Almeida, R.M.M., Cabral, J.C.C., Narvaes, R.: Behavioural, hormonal and neurobiological mechanisms of aggressive behaviour in human and nonhuman primates. Physiol. Behav. 143, 121–135 (2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Jabeen, F.: How happy you are: a computational study of social impact on self-esteem. In: International Conference on Social Informatics, Social Informatics, vol. 11186, pp. 108–117. Springer, Cham (2018)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Treur, J.: Multilevel network reification: representing higher order adaptivity in a network. In: Complex Networks and Their Applications VII, pp. 635–651. Springer (2019)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Treur, J.: Modeling higher-order adaptivity of a network by multilevel network reification. Netw. Sci. J. (2019, to appear)Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Treur, J.: Network-Oriented Modeling. Springer International Publishing, Cham (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Hebb, D.: The Organization of Behavior. Wiley, Hoboken (1949)Google Scholar
  18. 18.
  19. 19.
    Nai, A.: Disagreeable narcissists, extroverted psychopaths, and elections: a new dataset to measure the personality of candidates worldwide. Eur. Polit. Sci. 18, 309–334 (2019)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Folley, A.: Trump rips MSNBC, CNN for inviting guests who “have no idea what I am all about” (2019)Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Hutto, C.J., Gilbert, E.: VADER: a parsimonious rule-based model for sentiment analysis of social media text. In: AAAI Conference on Weblogs and Social Media, ICWSM (2014)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Vrije Universiteit AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands

Personalised recommendations