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"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations
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"I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations

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    • 1. Nicholas David Bowman (WVU) Daniel Schultheiss (TU-Ilmenau) Christina Schumann (TU-Ilmenau) Why I do the virtual voodoo that I do! Bowman, N. D., Schultheiss, D., & Schumann, C. (2011, November). “I’m attached, and I’m a good guy!": How character attachment influences (pro-social and anti-social) usage motivations. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Communication Association, New Orleans.
    • 2. Background <ul><li>Character attachment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rooted in work on parasocial interaction and identification </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In gaming, You Are The Character ; a “melding of minds” </li></ul></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011
    • 3. Background <ul><li>PRO-SOCIAL GAMING </li></ul><ul><li>Gaming as social experience </li></ul><ul><li>Gaming and social capital </li></ul><ul><li>Extraversion and gaming </li></ul><ul><li>ANTI-SOCIAL GAMING </li></ul><ul><li>Gaming and aggression </li></ul><ul><li>Gamers as narcissistic </li></ul><ul><li>Gaming and grief play </li></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011
    • 4. Research Questions <ul><li>Driving question </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Are there meaningful relationships between dimensions of character attachment and pro- and anti-social gameplay (MMO) motivations? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Controls variables include time spent playing, game skill, demographic variables </li></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011
    • 5. Method <ul><li>N = 523 participants (n = 450 played MMOs) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>83% male, avg. age 22.68 (SD = 5.05), 14-49 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>62% German, 25% US </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>91% at least high school degree </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Avg. gameplay of 14.5 hours weekly, Median of 10 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Est. total gameplay hours of 3240, Median of 600 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WoW was most popular (42%, n = 189) </li></ul></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011
    • 6. Method <ul><li>Character Attachment Scale (Lewis, Weber, & Bowman, 2008) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Identification, Suspension of Disbelief, Responsibility, and Increased Control </li></ul></ul><ul><li>PCA reduction of existing scales (Yee, 2006; 2007) </li></ul><ul><li>Video game self-efficacy (Bracken & Skalski, 2006) </li></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011 Pro-Social Factors Anti-Social Factors <ul><li>Seven items </li></ul><ul><li>Factor loadings > .600, cross loadings < .300 </li></ul><ul><li>Similar to Yee’s “socializing”, “relationship”, “teamwork” </li></ul><ul><li>α = .82 </li></ul><ul><li>Five items </li></ul><ul><li>Factor loadings > .600, cross loadings < .300 </li></ul><ul><li>Similar to Yee’s “competition” and “(personal) advancement” </li></ul><ul><li>α = .80 </li></ul>r = -.034, ns
    • 7. Results <ul><li>PRO-SOCIAL </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased sense of control </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased time spent with favorite game </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased skill </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lower education level </li></ul></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011
    • 8. Results <ul><li>ANTI-SOCIAL </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased suspension of disbelief </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Decreased sense of responsibility </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased skill </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Younger players </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Male players </li></ul></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011
    • 9. Discussion <ul><li>Character attachment has been fronted as a multidimensional way to understand the connection between one and his/her avatar </li></ul><ul><li>Different types of attachment can explain self-reported pro- and anti- gaming behaviors </li></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011
    • 10. Discussion <ul><li>Anti-social gamers were often: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Suspenders of disbelief </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lack of responsibility for characters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Younger </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Male </li></ul></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011 Bandura?
    • 11. Discussion <ul><li>Future research should </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Replicate and refine the pro-/anti-gaming motivation metric (CFA, more dimensions, etc.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Experimental control for causality </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Extending beyond MMOs (yet acknowledging MMOS place heavy(ier?) emphasis on character development/character attachment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Extend beyond games (trolling, AR studies, etc.) </li></ul></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011
    • 12. Conclusion <ul><li>“ The relationship between individuals and their virtual interactions seems to be related to the strength of the relationship between individuals and their virtual selves.” </li></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011
    • 13. Thank you! <ul><li>In progress research , so for information: </li></ul><ul><li>Nicholas David Bowman, Ph.D. </li></ul><ul><li>Assistant Professor, Communication Studies </li></ul><ul><li>West Virginia University </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>@bowmanspartan </li></ul>11/11/11 (c) ND Bowman, 2011

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