Title: E-Tsismis: Facebook Gossiping Motives, Propensity, Comfortability, and Behavior of Bacolod Youth
Abstract: The study examines the “self” of the gossiper and other factors (i.e., level of online disinhibition, level of comfortability of using a particular Facebook feature, and level of propensity to gossip) describing the Facebook gossiping of youth aged 18-20 in Bacolod City, Negros Occidental. The researchers conducted an interview-administered survey on 400 Bacolodnons, and the data was quantitatively analyzed according to the study’s framework that is anchored on the concepts of Social Exchange Theory and Online Disinhibition Effect (Suler, 2004). It was found that Bacolod youth are heavy users of Facebook, mainly accessing it on their smartphone devices. They also mostly prefer personal messaging (PM) when gossiping on Facebook and generally have moderate to high propensity to gossip on the site. They also possess a high level of online disinhibition, too. Accordingly, one’s level of comfortability of using a particular Facebook feature is correlated to one’s level of online disinhibition which in turn directly linked to the propensity to gossip. Bacolod youth mainly gossip for entertainment and mostly talk about the romantic relationship or love affairs of other people; they least talk about sex. Furthermore, findings have shown that gossip varies across different groups (e.g., personal characteristics, and level of online disinhibition) concerning topics, level of comfortability of Facebook features, motive level, and propensity to gossip.
Keywords: Gossip, Facebook, Comfortability, Online Disinhibition, Motives, Propensity