All click, no action? : Online action, efficacy perceptions, and prior experience combine to affect future collective action

Wilkins, Denise J. and Livingstone, Andrew G. and Levine, Mark (2019) All click, no action? : Online action, efficacy perceptions, and prior experience combine to affect future collective action. Computers in Human Behavior, 91. pp. 97-105. ISSN 0747-5632

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Social media is increasingly used for social protest, but does internet-enabled action lead to ‘slacktivism’ or promote increased activism? We show that the answer to this question depends on prior level of activism, and on beliefs about the effectiveness of individual contribution to the collective campaign. Internet-enabled action was varied quasi-experimentally, with participants (n = 143) choosing whether or not to share a campaign on social media. Participants were then informed that sharing on social media had a big (high action efficacy) or small (low action efficacy) impact on achieving the campaign's goal. Prior levels of activism were measured before the experiment, and general levels of collective action were measured one week after the experiment. Taking internet-enabled action for one campaign increased future activism for other campaigns – but only in individuals who were already active and who perceived their actions to be an effective contribution to the campaign.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Computers in Human Behavior
Additional Information:
This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Computers in Human Behavior. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Computers in Human Behavior, 91, 2019 DOI: 10.1016/j.chb.2018.09.007
Uncontrolled Keywords:
?? activismcollective actionparticipative efficacyslacktivismsocial mediaarts and humanities (miscellaneous)human-computer interactiongeneral psychologypsychology(all) ??
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Deposited On:
22 Jun 2019 08:56
Last Modified:
16 Jul 2024 10:57