As information technology pervades all aspects of our lives, researchers have begun to explore it as more than just a tool, but rather as an essential component of our identities. We build on the conceptualization of IT Identity advanced in prior research to explore the meanings that people internalize with respect to IT and the ways in which they interact with the increasingly digital world. Through an ongoing embedded mixed-design grounded theory study, we define key meanings associated with IT identity and anti-ID identity (or positive and negative self-identification with IT) and we uncover the presence of an ambivalent or conflicted identity, where both positive and negative self-identification coexist. Our qualitative and quantitative findings support the existence of four different identity categories and highlight differences in meanings across participants in these categories.
Carter, Michelle; Compeau, Deborah; and Schmalz, Marc, "The Ambivalent Potential of IT Identity: Me, Not-Me, and Conflicted Me in a Digital World" (2018). DIGIT 2018 Proceedings. 4.