Unspeaking on Facebook? Testing network effects on self-censorship of political expressions in social network sites

Kyounghee Kwon, Shin Il Moon, Michael A. Stefanone

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    13 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The aim of this study is to explore online social network exposure effects on predicting individual’s willingness to self-censor political expression (WTSC) and political posting behaviors. The spiral of silence (SOS) theory is applied to the context of online social networks wherein three major network characteristics are highlighted: reduced privacy, integration of multiple social context/relationships, and increase in unanticipated exposure to different opinions. The discussion leads us to propose three possible network effects in terms of WTSC and posting behavior including ‘relationship-specific fear of isolation’, ‘incongruence with dominant political orientation’, and ‘exposure to diverse opinions’. Results show that the exposure to diverse opinions is positively associated with WTSC, which in turn is associated with political posting behavior online. Interestingly, while fear of isolation from offline contacts increases WTSC, it has a positive association with actual posting behavior. We speculate to what extent the social conformity proposition of the SOS theory should persist online and call for further exploration of informational nfluence as conceptually distinct from normative influence.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)1417-1435
    Number of pages19
    JournalQuality & Quantity
    Volume49
    Issue number4
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jul 23 2014

    Fingerprint

    censorship
    facebook
    Social Networks
    social network
    Testing
    Isolation
    social isolation
    anxiety
    political attitude
    conformity
    Proposition
    Privacy
    privacy
    contact
    Contact
    Distinct
    Context
    Relationships

    Keywords

    • Diversity exposure
    • Informational influence
    • Political expression
    • Self-censorship
    • Social network sites
    • Spiral of silence theory

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Statistics and Probability
    • Social Sciences(all)

    Cite this

    Unspeaking on Facebook? Testing network effects on self-censorship of political expressions in social network sites. / Kwon, Kyounghee; Moon, Shin Il; Stefanone, Michael A.

    In: Quality & Quantity, Vol. 49, No. 4, 23.07.2014, p. 1417-1435.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    @article{d34f787925e44611ba4cc786f2e41f3e,
    title = "Unspeaking on Facebook? Testing network effects on self-censorship of political expressions in social network sites",
    abstract = "The aim of this study is to explore online social network exposure effects on predicting individual’s willingness to self-censor political expression (WTSC) and political posting behaviors. The spiral of silence (SOS) theory is applied to the context of online social networks wherein three major network characteristics are highlighted: reduced privacy, integration of multiple social context/relationships, and increase in unanticipated exposure to different opinions. The discussion leads us to propose three possible network effects in terms of WTSC and posting behavior including ‘relationship-specific fear of isolation’, ‘incongruence with dominant political orientation’, and ‘exposure to diverse opinions’. Results show that the exposure to diverse opinions is positively associated with WTSC, which in turn is associated with political posting behavior online. Interestingly, while fear of isolation from offline contacts increases WTSC, it has a positive association with actual posting behavior. We speculate to what extent the social conformity proposition of the SOS theory should persist online and call for further exploration of informational nfluence as conceptually distinct from normative influence.",
    keywords = "Diversity exposure, Informational influence, Political expression, Self-censorship, Social network sites, Spiral of silence theory",
    author = "Kyounghee Kwon and Moon, {Shin Il} and Stefanone, {Michael A.}",
    year = "2014",
    month = "7",
    day = "23",
    doi = "10.1007/s11135-014-0078-8",
    language = "English (US)",
    volume = "49",
    pages = "1417--1435",
    journal = "Quality and Quantity",
    issn = "0033-5177",
    publisher = "Springer Netherlands",
    number = "4",

    }

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Unspeaking on Facebook? Testing network effects on self-censorship of political expressions in social network sites

    AU - Kwon, Kyounghee

    AU - Moon, Shin Il

    AU - Stefanone, Michael A.

    PY - 2014/7/23

    Y1 - 2014/7/23

    N2 - The aim of this study is to explore online social network exposure effects on predicting individual’s willingness to self-censor political expression (WTSC) and political posting behaviors. The spiral of silence (SOS) theory is applied to the context of online social networks wherein three major network characteristics are highlighted: reduced privacy, integration of multiple social context/relationships, and increase in unanticipated exposure to different opinions. The discussion leads us to propose three possible network effects in terms of WTSC and posting behavior including ‘relationship-specific fear of isolation’, ‘incongruence with dominant political orientation’, and ‘exposure to diverse opinions’. Results show that the exposure to diverse opinions is positively associated with WTSC, which in turn is associated with political posting behavior online. Interestingly, while fear of isolation from offline contacts increases WTSC, it has a positive association with actual posting behavior. We speculate to what extent the social conformity proposition of the SOS theory should persist online and call for further exploration of informational nfluence as conceptually distinct from normative influence.

    AB - The aim of this study is to explore online social network exposure effects on predicting individual’s willingness to self-censor political expression (WTSC) and political posting behaviors. The spiral of silence (SOS) theory is applied to the context of online social networks wherein three major network characteristics are highlighted: reduced privacy, integration of multiple social context/relationships, and increase in unanticipated exposure to different opinions. The discussion leads us to propose three possible network effects in terms of WTSC and posting behavior including ‘relationship-specific fear of isolation’, ‘incongruence with dominant political orientation’, and ‘exposure to diverse opinions’. Results show that the exposure to diverse opinions is positively associated with WTSC, which in turn is associated with political posting behavior online. Interestingly, while fear of isolation from offline contacts increases WTSC, it has a positive association with actual posting behavior. We speculate to what extent the social conformity proposition of the SOS theory should persist online and call for further exploration of informational nfluence as conceptually distinct from normative influence.

    KW - Diversity exposure

    KW - Informational influence

    KW - Political expression

    KW - Self-censorship

    KW - Social network sites

    KW - Spiral of silence theory

    UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84930763466&partnerID=8YFLogxK

    UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84930763466&partnerID=8YFLogxK

    U2 - 10.1007/s11135-014-0078-8

    DO - 10.1007/s11135-014-0078-8

    M3 - Article

    VL - 49

    SP - 1417

    EP - 1435

    JO - Quality and Quantity

    JF - Quality and Quantity

    SN - 0033-5177

    IS - 4

    ER -