Attributions of blame in a hypothetical internet solicitation case: Roles of victim naivety, parental neglect and respondent gender

  • Rogers P
  • Wczasek R
  • Davies M
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Abstract

Abstract This study investigates attributions towards the perpetrator, the victim and the victim's parents in a hypothetical internet solicitation case. A community sample of 187 respondents read a vignette outlining an internet chatroom conversation between a 10-year-old girl and a 25-year-old man, followed by a depicted sexual assault, before rating 26 attribution items. Principal components analysis extracted six reliable and interpretable factors which were then subjected to a two-respondent gender?two-victim age?two-victim internet naivety?two-parental neglect between-subjects multiple analyses of variance (MANOVA). While levels of victim naivety had no impact on any measure, parents who were neglectful of their child's online activities were deemed more culpable for their child's later abuse than were parents who took an active interest in their child's activities. In general, females deemed the victim more credible than males. Implications are discussed. Abstract This study investigates attributions towards the perpetrator, the victim and the victim's parents in a hypothetical internet solicitation case. A community sample of 187 respondents read a vignette outlining an internet chatroom conversation between a 10-year-old girl and a 25-year-old man, followed by a depicted sexual assault, before rating 26 attribution items. Principal components analysis extracted six reliable and interpretable factors which were then subjected to a two-respondent gender?two-victim age?two-victim internet naivety?two-parental neglect between-subjects multiple analyses of variance (MANOVA). While levels of victim naivety had no impact on any measure, parents who were neglectful of their child's online activities were deemed more culpable for their child's later abuse than were parents who took an active interest in their child's activities. In general, females deemed the victim more credible than males. Implications are discussed.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Blame
  • Child sex abuse
  • Cyerbersexploitation
  • Internet solicitation
  • Naivety
  • Neglect

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Authors

  • Paul Rogers

  • Ryan Wczasek

  • Michelle Davies

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