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Facebook Friends, You Tubers and the Twitterati: Digital Communities in Web 2.0

Digital Scholars Works-in-Progress 2010

Facebook Friends, You Tubers and the Twitterati: Digital Communities in the Web 2.0 Era

Friday 2/26 noon – 1:30          McKenzie Collaboration Center

Harsha Gangadharbatla and Kim Sheehan (School of Journalism & Communication)

Harsha Gangadharbatla

“Are you on Facebook?” “Will you follow me on Twitter?” Everyone, it seems, is joining and participating

in online Social Network Sites (SNS).  While motivations of college students have been examined, motivations beyond the campus have received little attention. Additionally, how motivations change as an individual spends more time on an SNS (and as more applications are made available to individuals) has not been examined. Kim and Harsha will present preliminary results from an online study of motivations from adults 18-64 to join SNS.

Kim Sheehan

Using the traditional media approach of Uses and Gratifications, they examine why users join these sites initially, and how their motivations change over time. Results indicate that motivations for Facebook and Twitter are different, both for initial adoption and for usage over time.  The limitations of ‘traditional’ research paradigms in the study of new technology will be highlighted.  Additionally, they examine the barriers seen to participating in SNS, and the role information privacy plays in the presentation of one’s self at the SNS. Finally, they will explore implications for future SNS development, as well as theory development, in the Web 2.0 world. Harsha and Kim conducted this research with support from the Oregon Community Credit Union Research Fellowship.

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