The best of both worlds? Online ties and the alternating use of social network sites in the context of migration

Binder, J.F. and Sutcliffe, A.G., 2014. The best of both worlds? Online ties and the alternating use of social network sites in the context of migration. Societies, 4 (4), pp. 753-769. ISSN 2075-4698

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Abstract

While an ever-growing body of research is concerned with user behavior on individual social network sites (SNSs)—mostly Facebook—studies addressing an alternating use of two or more SNS are rare. Here, we investigate the relationship between alternating SNS use and social capital in the context of migration. Alternating SNS use avoids some of the problems associated with large networks located on one site; in particular the management of different social or cultural spheres. Not only does this strategy hold potential for increased social capital, it also provides a particular incentive for migrants faced with the challenge of staying in touch with back home and managing a new social environment. Two survey studies are presented that focus on the relationship between alternating SNS use and online ties in a migrant context involving Indian nationals. Study 1 looked at migration within India, whereas Study 2 compared international with domestic SNS users. In both studies, alternating SNS use added to the prediction of online network size and accounted for differences in network size found for migrant and non-migrant users. Differences were due to the number of peripheral ties, rather than core ties. Findings suggest that alternating SNS use may constitute a compensatory strategy that helps to overcome lower levels of socializing represented through a single SNS.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Societies
Creators: Binder, J.F. and Sutcliffe, A.G.
Publisher: MDPI AG
Place of Publication: Basel, Switzerland
Date: 2014
Volume: 4
Number: 4
ISSN: 2075-4698
Identifiers:
NumberType
10.3390/soc4040753DOI
Rights: © 2014 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Depositing User: EPrints Services
Date Added: 09 Oct 2015 11:11
Last Modified: 23 Aug 2016 09:14
URI: http://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/24097

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