Young adults’ perceptions of their online versus offline interactions with close friends: An exploration of individual differences

Article


Scott, Riley A., Stuart, Jaimee and Barber, Bonnie L.. 2024. "Young adults’ perceptions of their online versus offline interactions with close friends: An exploration of individual differences." Computers in Human Behavior Reports. 14. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chbr.2024.100399
Article Title

Young adults’ perceptions of their online versus offline interactions with close friends: An exploration of individual differences

ERA Journal ID212150
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsScott, Riley A., Stuart, Jaimee and Barber, Bonnie L.
Journal TitleComputers in Human Behavior Reports
Journal Citation14
Article Number100399
Number of Pages7
Year2024
PublisherElsevier
Place of PublicationUnited Kingdom
ISSN2451-9588
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chbr.2024.100399
Web Address (URL)https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2451958824000320
AbstractThe current study investigated the roles of social anxiety and gender as factors in young adults’ perceptions of the differences in their online versus offline interactions with friends. A large sample of 687 Australian young adults completed an online survey and of those, 520 participants (62.7% female; Mage = 19.34 years, SD = 2.05) who perceived a difference between their online and offline interactions were included in analyses. Matrix coding and crosstab queries were conducted comparing frequencies of theme endorsement of those high (n = 103) versus low-to-moderate (n = 416) in social anxiety, and female (n = 326) versus male (n = 193). Key differences were noted for socially anxious versus less-anxious youth, and in how females described and utilised the affordances of online interaction, relative to males. Compared to their peers with lower social anxiety, more socially anxious young adults described feeling more confident, comfortable, and open in online versus offline interactions with close friends. Further, female young adults reported using the perceived control and accessibility of friends online for relationship maintenance more than their male counterparts. Results highlight the need for additional research exploring the nuances of online interactions and the experiences of such for young adults.
KeywordsFriendship; Gender; Offline interaction ; Online interaction ; Social anxiety ; Young adulthood
Contains Sensitive ContentDoes not contain sensitive content
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020520105. Psychological methodology, design and analysis
Byline AffiliationsSchool of Psychology and Wellbeing
Griffith University
United Nations University Institute, Macau
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