Minority Status and the Use of Computer-Mediated Communication: A Test of the Social Diversification Hypothesis

Gustavo S. Mesch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Group differences in the use of computer-mediated communication (CMC) were investigated, to test the diversification hypothesis that argues that minorities and immigrants will be more likely to use CMC to compensate for their lack of social capital. Data were gathered from a sample of Internet users reflecting the percentage of minorities in the general population (n = 1,264). The results provide support for the hypothesis, indicating that in multicultural societies disadvantaged groups show greater motivation to use CMC to expand business and occupational contacts, whereas members of the majority group are more motivated to use CMC to maintain existing family and friendships ties. Implications of the finding are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-337
Number of pages21
JournalCommunication Research
Volume39
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2012

Keywords

  • communication channel choice
  • computer-mediated communication
  • digital divide
  • social networking sites

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language

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