Digital crowding: When social media goes bad

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Slides on 'digital crowding' for a talk on 13th May at a SAS Design event. Somehow lost the images acknowledgement page in the final save - will rebuild and replace....

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Digital crowding: When social media goes bad

  1. 1. Social media: a danger to itself? <ul><li>Dr. Adam N. Joinson </li></ul><ul><li>Interactions Lab, </li></ul><ul><li>School of Management </li></ul><ul><li>University of Bath </li></ul><ul><li>www.interactionslab.net </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>
  2. 4. 2 Crowding != Density
  3. 5. 3 Crowding is a psychological response to spatial constraints
  4. 6. 4 4 Crowding leads to Mental health problems (stress, depression, suicide, anxiety) Problematic social relations
  5. 7. 5 Increased territoriality
  6. 8. 6 Physical illness Increased desire to withdraw Family quarrels Aggressive behavior
  7. 9. 7 The mental attitude of the people of the metropolis to one another may be designated formally as one of reserve... Indeed, if I am not mistaken, the inner side of this external reserve is not only indifference but more frequently than we believe, it is a slight aversion, a mutual strangeness and repulsion which, in a close contact which has arisen any way whatever, can break out into hatred and conflict. Georg Simmel (1903)- The Metropolis and Mental life
  8. 10. social media and crowding <ul><li>Disruption of dynamic boundary regulation </li></ul><ul><li>Overlapping social spheres, audiences </li></ul><ul><li>Unfettered sharing of personal information </li></ul>8 8
  9. 11. Openness and Intimacy <ul><li>Intimacy theories follow an ‘ideology of openness’ (Parks, 1992) </li></ul><ul><li>Self-disclosure associated with relationship satisfaction, ratings of closeness, love. </li></ul><ul><li>Propinquity & mere exposure effects </li></ul><ul><li>Danger of uncertainty (Knobloch, 2007) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>especially out of character behaviour (Turner, 1990) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Lack of monitoring can be a problem </li></ul>9 9 openness and relationships
  10. 12. <ul><li>The move to real names from pseudonyms </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of privacy control (real, normative) </li></ul><ul><li>Need to generate value (relational and for the organisation) </li></ul><ul><li>Historical and current information </li></ul><ul><li>Social graph information </li></ul><ul><li>Google </li></ul><ul><li>Broadcasting & persistence (Binder et al, 2009) </li></ul>10 10 openness and social media
  11. 13. 11 Radical transparency
  12. 14. 12
  13. 15. 13
  14. 16. 14 14 “ There are good reasons to balance openness with secrecy in a relationship ” (Petriono, 1991)
  15. 17. 15 15 “ withholding information is sometimes benign or even useful ” (Afifi et al., 2007, p.78)
  16. 18. Why lots of information can be bad... <ul><li>Familiarity breeds contempt (Norton et al., 2008) </li></ul><ul><li>Distant relationships (Stafford and Reske, 1990) </li></ul><ul><li>Space for storytelling </li></ul><ul><li>100% predictability = dull </li></ul><ul><li>Trust requires uncertainty - e.g. kids location tracking </li></ul>16 16
  17. 19. 17 17
  18. 20. 18 18
  19. 21. 19 19
  20. 22. Disruption of boundary regulation <ul><li>We achieve a ‘desired’ state of privacy / intimacy by regulating boundaries (physical and psychological) </li></ul><ul><li>These rules are negotiated, developed, shared by groups (norms) </li></ul><ul><li>Social media rarely allows for nuanced sharing, or variable depth of sharing </li></ul>20 20
  21. 23. Overlapping social spheres <ul><li>Social media has become more popular </li></ul><ul><li>This means, we are increasingly connecting to people from multiple spheres </li></ul><ul><li>The causes problems.... </li></ul>21
  22. 24. 22 22 Source: Marder & Joinson, in review. Sample: 546 Facebook users (UK)
  23. 25. 23 23
  24. 26. Sending the wrong photo? <ul><li>400+ participants </li></ul><ul><li>Completed measures of photo sharing, and relationship outcomes </li></ul>24 24
  25. 27. 25 25
  26. 28. 26 26
  27. 29. 27 27
  28. 30. 28 28
  29. 31. 31
  30. 32. Likely response? 29
  31. 33. Likely response? <ul><li>Less sharing </li></ul><ul><li>More privacy concern </li></ul>30
  32. 34. <ul><li>How do we design social media that encourage intimacy / positive relations while preserving privacy? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New (social) media encourages sharing, openness (with peers and organisations) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lack of trust, privacy leads to behavioral & communication management of privacy </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What would new media designed for intimacy look like? </li></ul>32 32 Challenges?
  33. 35. Thanks! <ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>twitter: @joinson </li></ul><ul><li>www.interactionslab.net </li></ul><ul><li>www.joinson.com </li></ul>33 33

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