With the growing popularity of social media platforms like Facebook, human interaction in online environments is increasing. As a result, social perceptions of the individuals "behind the screen" has become a topic that needs to be explored. The present study explores how the media platform (specifically Facebook post versus Video) affects perceptions of an individual with a controversial opinion. Potentially, the same content in a video format may increase the likability of the presenter in contrast to reading the same opinions in Facebook posts. The present study examined the role of alignment of opinion (agree vs. disagree with presenter) and content modality (Facebook video vs. Facebook text post) on participants' perception of likeability towards the online persona. In this study, three hypotheses were tested. The first hypothesis is that video posts will generally yield more likability for the presenter about a controversial issue than the same content in a Facebook post. Second, people who agree with the presenter's position of a controversial issue will find the person posting more likable. Finally, an interaction is expected such that likability will be most affected for the participants who disagree with the presenter; specifically those participants who disagree will be more likely to like the presenter in the video condition, whereas format will matter less for those who agree with the presenter's opinion. The dependent variables of the present study are the Interpersonal Adjective Scale (IAS, Trapnell & Wiggins 1990) and scores on the Basic Empathy Scale in Adults (BES-A, Jolliffe and Farrington, 2006).
Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
College of Sciences
Orlando (Main) Campus
Pharmer, Rebecca L., "The Role of Content Modality on the Likability of an Online Communicator" (2018). Honors Undergraduate Theses. 434.