Negative Corelation Between Social Networking Sites Use And Romantic Relationship Quality: Gender Difference In Social Surveillance

966 words - 4 pages

Social networking sites (SNS) has become an essential part of people’s life over the last few years. One common feature of social networking sites is that people are able to view others’ social relationship and public profile (Boyd & Ellison, 2008). This feature increases the possibility of surveillance on others’ personal webpages, which can exert a measurable impact on people’s social relationship, including romantic relationship (Muise, Christofides, & Desmarais, 2009). By definition, interpersonal electronic surveillance (IES) means that individuals search and gather another person’s online or offline information furtively, which can be applied to almost all types of social ...view middle of the document...

However, Tokunaga, R, S (2011) questioned the validity of the findings of Muse et al. (2009) and Christopher et al. (2009) . Users can use different kinds of functions such as maintaining their profile or updating own status which are not related to their romantic relationship, but the studies above neither separated those unromantic-related activities apart, nor specified the effect of unromantic-related activities on romantic relationship. Muise et al. (2009) only presumed more frequent social surveillance might contribute to relational problem. The query of validity can also be supported by the relatively low R-Square in the study of Christopher et al. (2009), which is a signal of potential confounding variables. According to Tokkunaga (2011), claiming status on Facebook may help diminish certain relational uncertainty of romantic relationship, but the act of electronic social surveillance towards romantic partner increases degree of jealousy in romantic relationship. Tokunaga (2011) does not identify the influential variables for IES behavior such as gender and the relation quality in a systematic way, which present study attempts to investigate in a more systematic way. But Tokunaga’s IES Scale for SNSs (2011) provides a alternative methodology for current study.
    In order to understand the negative association between IES behavior and romantic relationship further, the gender difference in surveillance behavior is of great significance as well. A significant gender difference on both the access and usage of Internet was justified by researchers in the early years, but this gender gap started narrowing down dramatically from 2000 (Dholakia, Dholakia, & Kshetri, 2003; Weiser, 2000). In terms of the gender difference in IES behavior, although it is common to hypothesize that females are more likely to perform IES behavior due to the tendency to engage in online social-interactional behavior (Fallows, 2005), Tokunaga (2011) found little gender difference in the involvement and frequency of IES behavior.
    Nevertheless, no difference in checking frequency is not equal to no overall gender difference. Marshall, Bejanyan, Castro, and Lee (2012) used intake...

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