SIG Social Computing

Paper Type

Complete

Paper Number

1477

Description

Understanding the societal impact of IT use is a critical step towards preventing harmful activities online. In particular, Vulnerable Groups [VGs] using Social Media Platforms [SMPs] are exposed to a variety of risks. Our research aims to understand how a particular VG, adolescent females, engage with Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat differently. Qualitative analysis of 22 semi-structured interviews reveals that the platform, tangible authority figures, risk normalization and risk awareness collectively influence how this group engaged with SMPs. With a low presence of adults and a high presence of their own peers, the participants engaged with Instagram and Snapchat to a greater extent than Facebook. In addition, high- risk disclosures were more likely to occur on Instagram and Snapchat as the participants felt more comfortable with expressing themselves openly on these platforms. Findings and future research directions are discussed.

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Aug 10th, 12:00 AM

Vulnerable Groups Online: Understanding Engagement with Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat

Understanding the societal impact of IT use is a critical step towards preventing harmful activities online. In particular, Vulnerable Groups [VGs] using Social Media Platforms [SMPs] are exposed to a variety of risks. Our research aims to understand how a particular VG, adolescent females, engage with Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat differently. Qualitative analysis of 22 semi-structured interviews reveals that the platform, tangible authority figures, risk normalization and risk awareness collectively influence how this group engaged with SMPs. With a low presence of adults and a high presence of their own peers, the participants engaged with Instagram and Snapchat to a greater extent than Facebook. In addition, high- risk disclosures were more likely to occur on Instagram and Snapchat as the participants felt more comfortable with expressing themselves openly on these platforms. Findings and future research directions are discussed.

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