Uniform TitleMobile music technology, communication isolation and community building: an analysis of college students' use of digital entertainment
NameLever, Katie Marie (author), Katz, James (chair), Pavlik, John (internal member), Scott, Craig (internal member), Connaughton, Stacey (outside member), Rutgers University, Graduate School - New Brunswick,
SubjectCommunication, Information and Library Studies,
MP3 players--Social aspects,
Digital music players--Social aspects,
Portable media players--Social aspects
DescriptionThis dissertation explores the social implications of MP3 use, and particularly focuses on the ways in which these technologies have the major effect of isolating users and the ways in which they facilitate sharing practices and social interaction.
This dissertation asks: why do students adopt MP3 devices, what are the social implications of use, what goals do students have in mind when using them, and do other factors such as personality, perceived technological aptitude and gender play a role in how individuals adopt and use these technologies?
A total of 43 students participated in three focus groups which were conducted at various points in February and March of 2006. A survey of 200 students was conducted during the month of April of 2007. Based on these data, it appears that social influence, in addition to pure personal utility, play a role in adoption decisions. Dimensions affecting consumption behavior are the environmental isolation and personal entertainment factors which can be provided by the mobile players. However, a substantial minority of students also use the device not to isolate themselves but rather, to engage with other students. Additionally, the research confirmed prior studies indicating that males perceive themselves as having higher levels of proficiency in MP3 use and operation, but also more generally with technologies. The personality dimension of sociability was found to play a role in whether or not individuals physically share their devices with others. In terms of behavior and management of access to others, 87% of respondents indicated that they had, through their use, ignored someone else. A statistical relationship was also found to exist between the variables of dependency and having engaged in socially isolating behaviors. In terms of the theoretical implications of this research, it seems that Apparatgeist Theory (Katz &amp;amp;amp; Aakhus, 2002), Domestication Theory (Silverstone &amp;amp;amp; Haddon, 1996), and Uses and Gratifications (Katz et al., 1974) can all be applied to the MP3 dynamic.
In sum, this research found that students use their music technologies not only for solitary listening activities, but for sharing interactions as well.
NoteIncludes bibliographical references (p. 149-158).
CollectionGraduate School - New Brunswick Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Organization NameRutgers, The State University of New Jersey
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work.