“Social Media Participatory Cultures -A Study of the Dynamics between User Personality and Facebook Use” Dr. Kalyani Suresh Assistant Professor, Amrita School of Communication, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, Coimbatore, India email@example.com
The Uses and Gratifications Theory suggests that people have different socio-psychological traits, which may affect the way and the reasons they use social media to satisfy their personal needs.
In the Internet environment, users are even more actively engaged communication participants, compared to other traditional media.
Created in 2004, as of April 2011, Facebook has above 660 million users worldwide. It is reported to have more than 23 million users in India, with more than 20 million being above 18 years of age and over 3 million in the below 18 years category.
Researchers have found high levels of correlation between personality traits and use of social networking sites. Most common personality traits studied come under the broad dimensions of Extraversion, Emotional Stability, Openness to Experiences, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness
Openness to Experience: curious, intelligent and imaginative. High scorers tend to be artistic and sophisticated in taste and appreciate diverse views, ideas, and experiences. Conscientiousness: responsible, organized, persevering. Conscientious individuals are extremely reliable and tend to be high achievers, hard workers, and planners. Extraversion: outgoing, amicable, assertive. Friendly and energetic, extroverts draw inspiration from social situations.
Agreeableness: cooperative, helpful, nurturing. People who score high in agreeableness are peace- keepers who are generally optimistic and trusting of others. Neuroticism (Emotional Stability): anxious, insecure, sensitive. Neurotics are moody, tense, and easily tipped into experiencing negative emotions.
Studies on gratiﬁcations of Facebook users and individual personality characteristics have used the student community as their samples.
This study uses wider age groups as samples to findout whether there is a relationship betweenpersonality traits and various indicators of Facebookuse in terms of age and gender
An online survey was conducted among Indian respondents between October and November 2011. The survey was conducted using the Kwik Survey host
45% of the respondents were men and 55% were women. Ages ranged from ‘below 15 years’ to ‘32 years and above’. A majority of respondents in the ‘older’ age category (96%) were early adopters of Facebook.
Respondents answered questions on basic use ofFacebook, attitudes and online sociability functionsassociated with Facebook and personality traits relateditems.
Attitudes Facebook is a part of my everyday activity I am proud to tell people I am on Facebook I dedicate part of my daily schedule to Facebook I feel out of touch when I havent logged on to Facebook for a while I feel I am part of the Facebook community I would be sad if Facebook shut down I am satisfied with Facebook Online Sociability Function How often do you use Facebook during working hrs? how often do you use Facebook to comment on others photos? how often do you use Facebook to post on others walls? how often do you use Facebook to check on your own wall? how often do you use Facebook to send private messages?
Majority of Facebook users reported lower levels of Extraversion (78%), lower levels of Conscientiousness (73%), lower levels of Emotional Stability (73%), higher levels of Agreeableness (76%) and Openness to Experience (77%)
Respondents’ Age Respondents’ Personality Types Attitude towards Facebook and Online Sociability Functions variable Age Extraversion Openness to Emotional Stability(Older/Younger) (High/Low) Experience (High/Low) (High/Low) Older Low Facebook is a part of my everyday activity Older Low I feel out of touch when I havent logged on to Facebook for a while - Low I dedicate part of my daily schedule to Facebook Older Low I feel I am part of the Facebook community Older Low I would be sad if Facebook shut down - Low Low I am proud to tell people I am on Facebook Older - I am satisfied with Facebook Younger Using Facebook during working hours - Younger Using Facebook to comment on others photos - Younger Using Facebook to post on others walls - Younger Using Facebook to check on your own wall - Younger Low Using Facebook to send private messages -
The equal time spent using Facebook (10 to 30 min per day) by respondents, regardless of extraversion score (high/low) suggests that online introverts behaved in a similar manner to extraverts.
This suggests that Facebook was a “level playing field” for introverts and extraverts alike.
Older people were more engaged on Facebook as a daily routine. Younger respondents used Facebook communicatively and interpersonally. No significant differences in terms of gender on Attitudes and Online Sociability functions of Facebook users.