Event Title

Social Networking and Negative Effects on Relationships

Poster Number

26

Faculty Mentor

Matthew Hayes, Ph.D.

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Department

Psychology

Location

Richardson Ballroom

Start Date

24-4-2015 3:20 PM

End Date

24-4-2015 4:50 PM

Description

Social networking websites such as Facebook are a common form of communication among undergraduate students. When one’s significant other interacts with potential rivals for affection on Facebook, it may cause that person to experience jealousy or insecurity depending on his or her gender and the nature of the interaction. The current study assessed how individuals perceive online exchanges as unfaithful and whether or not those exchanges result in positive (stability and happiness) and negative (jealousy and insecurity) emotional outcomes and whether the type of communication (messages, videos, and pictures) mattered. The participants were 108 undergraduate students (70 women). The survey consisted of set of nine target scenarios describing a Facebook interaction between the participant’s significant other and a potential rival. Participants rated whether the interaction was an example of infidelity and how jealous, happy, insecure, stable, and trusting they would feel in their relationships. The experiment used a 3 (Severity: blatant, questionable, innocent) X 3 (Communication type: pictures, video, messages) within-subjects design. There were significant main effects for Severity and Communication on perceptions of infidelity. These were qualified by a significant Severity X Communication interaction, resulting from significantly lower ratings for blatant videos than for pictures and messages, which did not differ. All five emotional responses exhibited similar patterns of results. The current study reveals that people differentiate severity of online infidelity and videos elicit stronger reactions than messages or pictures. More importantly, the emotional consequences vary according to the perceived severity of the infidelity.

Comments

Presented at the Southeastern Psychological Association (SEPA) Annual Meeting, March 2015

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Apr 24th, 3:20 PM Apr 24th, 4:50 PM

Social Networking and Negative Effects on Relationships

Richardson Ballroom

Social networking websites such as Facebook are a common form of communication among undergraduate students. When one’s significant other interacts with potential rivals for affection on Facebook, it may cause that person to experience jealousy or insecurity depending on his or her gender and the nature of the interaction. The current study assessed how individuals perceive online exchanges as unfaithful and whether or not those exchanges result in positive (stability and happiness) and negative (jealousy and insecurity) emotional outcomes and whether the type of communication (messages, videos, and pictures) mattered. The participants were 108 undergraduate students (70 women). The survey consisted of set of nine target scenarios describing a Facebook interaction between the participant’s significant other and a potential rival. Participants rated whether the interaction was an example of infidelity and how jealous, happy, insecure, stable, and trusting they would feel in their relationships. The experiment used a 3 (Severity: blatant, questionable, innocent) X 3 (Communication type: pictures, video, messages) within-subjects design. There were significant main effects for Severity and Communication on perceptions of infidelity. These were qualified by a significant Severity X Communication interaction, resulting from significantly lower ratings for blatant videos than for pictures and messages, which did not differ. All five emotional responses exhibited similar patterns of results. The current study reveals that people differentiate severity of online infidelity and videos elicit stronger reactions than messages or pictures. More importantly, the emotional consequences vary according to the perceived severity of the infidelity.