Social Norm Spreading in Real and Virtual Environments: Pro-social Versus Pro-self Norm
It is a fact that technologies do not have fixed effects on people. Some researches show how phenomena such as social influence and conformity appear increasingly multiform and complex, in particular, because people engage more and more in web interactions. The study of conformity in the online environment has highlighted how, to model these dynamics, it is necessary to consider the peculiarities of such environment, since it presents characteristics that differentiate its interactions from the face-to-face ones. Therefore, this research aims at investigating whether and how the type of environment influences the level of conformity to different types of local norms shown to the experimental subjects during a bargaining web-based game. The evidence of the research, conducted on 484 participants, have suggested that there are different psychological processes involved in the conformity phenomenon depending on these factors. The results are discussed in the light of Self-categorization theory, as well as the SIDE model, and illustrate the relevance of considering these processes and their characteristics to promote the implementation of more efficient (and effective) online environments.
KeywordsSocial dynamics online Conformity Local norms spreading Ultimatum Game SIDE model
We wish to thank Dr. Silvia Grasso for her invaluable assistance in the management of the experiment.
This research received no external funding.
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare there is no conflict of interest.
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