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The interpersonal privacy identity (IPI): development of a privacy as control model

Abstract

The Internet and social computing technology have revolutionized our ability to gather information as well as enabled new modes of communication and forms of self-expression. As the popularity of social computing technologies has increased, our society has begun to witness modifications in socialization behaviors. Social psychology theory suggests that technological changes can influence an individual’s expectation of privacy, through adaptive behaviors resulting from use (Laufer and Wolfe in J Soc Issues 33(3): 22–42 (1977)). We adapt traditional privacy theory to explore the influence of developmental and environmental factors on the individual’s inner privacy identity, which is comprised of the individual’s belief in his or her right to control (1) personal information and (2) interactions with others, and is continuously shaped by privacy experiences. We then use the inner privacy identity to examine interpersonal behaviors in the online context. We find that individuals’ belief in their right to control their information impacts their information disclosure practices when consequences are implied and that their belief in their right to control the interaction impacts their online information sharing practices. We do not find support for a relationship between the interaction management component of the IPI and online interaction behavior, which considered in the presence of the relationship between interaction management and online information sharing, suggests that interaction behavior is more complicated in the online context. Insights from the model developed in this study can inform future studies of situational privacy behaviors.

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Correspondence to Tabitha L. James.

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James, T.L., Nottingham, Q., Collignon, S.E. et al. The interpersonal privacy identity (IPI): development of a privacy as control model. Inf Technol Manag 17, 341–360 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10799-015-0246-0

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10799-015-0246-0

Keywords

  • Privacy
  • Online behavior
  • Information control
  • Interaction control