Social media during social distancing. The case of TikTok. The influence of gender traits on TikTok use during the global pandemic (COVID-19) and ultimately on well-being.
During the concurring global COVID-19 pandemic, an increase in social media use has been reported. It has remained a question without a conclusive answer how different uses of social media during this period influences well-being. Until recently, research on the effect of social media use on well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic has focused mainly on biological sex. The present study sought to contribute to the existing literature regarding this phenomenon by studying gender traits, which compose one's personality, as valuable predictor for different uses of media during the COVID-19 pandemic. To examine different uses of media, this research focuses on the use of TikTok specifically. Biological gender and gender traits are examined to investigate how this influences' coping and escapism strategies using TikTok, and how this ultimately influences the users' well-being. The study addressed the following research question: To what extent do biological gender and gender traits influence coping and escapism strategies, how does this influence TikTok use and how does this ultimately influence the users' well-being? To answer this research question, a quantitative survey was used among an international sample of TikTok users (N = 354). Results showed that gender traits influenced all variables under study, except for TikTok use in hours. Findings thus confirmed that gender traits add significant predictive value when analysing the motivations to use social media. Results of this research also revealed that regardless of one's age, during the COVID-19 pandemic, negative masculine traits and problem-focused coping, positively influenced well-being. Contrary to expected, escapism had no significant impact on well-being. Moreover, this study showed that for those who belong to Generation Z, a discontinuance intention for social media during the COVID-19 pandemic was possibly experienced. The study also demonstrated that for this specific group, using TikTok for the purpose of emotion-focused coping negatively influenced well-being. In conclusion, this research proposes several reassurances and warnings for different uses of TikTok during the COVID-19 pandemic. To improve well being during the COVID-19 pandemic or other following crises, future research should examine these different uses of TikTok and its influence on well-being for other social media platforms.
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|Media & Creative Industries|
|Organisation||Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication|
Social media during social distancing. The case of TikTok. The influence of gender traits on TikTok use during the global pandemic (COVID-19) and ultimately on well-being.. (2021, July 31). Social media during social distancing. The case of TikTok. The influence of gender traits on TikTok use during the global pandemic (COVID-19) and ultimately on well-being.. Media & Creative Industries. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/2105/60510