Contextual gaps and perception of privacy when using Facebook
Han, Kyung Jung
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As social networking sites (SNSs) have become another medium to communicate with publics, many communicators have focused on more effective ways to approach and interact with customers. With such an idea, many researchers have paid attention to the site users’ perceptions of the company and their privacy concerns. However, not only is a SNS a useful tool for corporate communication, but also it is a social interaction sphere with friends, family, and even strangers. Thus, although a SNS has shed light on a promising corporate communication sphere, there are few studies that consider both contexts – organization-to-public communication and peer-to-peer communication, as a rising field for new research. Therefore, this study aims to look at both contexts in the same SNS to provide more useful insights to scholars and practitioners in order to communicate with publics more efficiently with regard to Facebook users’ multiple selves and perception of privacy concerns. Through this framework, the present study seeks to create a strategy for minimizing customers’ privacy concerns and negative perceptions when they communicate with a company, as corporations adjust to a more ideal self presentation for effective communication. To accomplish this goal, the present study conducted a survey using two contexts— peer-to-peer communication and organization-to-public communication each with a brief situation scenario. Participants tended to have higher privacy concerns when they have lower boundary permeability, lower linkage with others, and higher ownership of their privacy. In terms of contexts, the subjects showed high sensitivity to the current context when they have lower boundary permeability, lower linkage with other, and higher ownership that all led to higher privacy concerns.