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Snapchat and its Cognitive Affordances: The Role of Social Presence and Theory of Mind

Sat, May 27, 14:00 to 15:15, Hilton San Diego Bayfront, Floor: 2, Indigo 202B


This paper identifies and examines the factors that make Snapchat a unique social medium. Specifically, the authors argue that what adds to the appeal of Snapchat is a focus on Social Presence. The authors make the further argument that Theory of Mind, a construct used in developmental psychology, plays a key role in degree of Social Presence generated by a medium as well as in the intensity in which a social medium plays a role in users’ daily life. A sample of 314 Snapchat users, aged from 18 to 29, showed significant links between measures of various precursors and components of Theory of Mind with dimensions of Social Presence, Snapchat Intensity, and frequency of Snapchat usage patterns. Further, the results of a mediation analysis suggest that increasing elements of Social Presence underlies the relationship between mechanisms of Theory of Mind and the intensity of a social media (Snapchat) in users’ daily life


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