Instagram: Motives for its use and relationship to narcissism and contextual age

  • Sheldon P
  • Bryant K
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Abstract

Instagram is the fastest growing social network site globally. This study investigates motives for its use, and its relationship to contextual age and narcissism. A survey of 239 college students revealed that the main reasons for Instagram use are "Surveillance/Knowledge about others," "Documentation," "Coolness," and "Creativity." The next significant finding was a positive relationship between those who scored high in interpersonal interaction and using Instagram for coolness, creative purposes, and surveillance. Another interesting finding shows that there is a positive relationship between high levels of social activity (traveling, going to sporting events, visiting friends, etc.) and being motivated to use Instagram as a means of documentation. In reference to narcissism, there was a positive relationship between using Instagram to be cool and for surveillance. Theoretical contributions of this study relate to our understanding of uses and gratifications theory. This study uncovers new motives for social media use not identified in previous literature.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Contextual age
  • Instagram
  • Narcissism
  • Social media

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Authors

  • Pavica Sheldon

  • Katherine Bryant

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