ICA Presentation: Searching About Safety–Exploring the Information Search Process in the Digital Safety Realm


April 7th, 2017

May 29, 2017 @ 9:30 am – 10:45 am
Hilton San Diego Bayfront, 2, Indigo 202B
1 Park Blvd
San Diego, CA 92101

Our PhD student and research assistant Ruth Shillair will present two papers at the International Communication Association (ICA) conference in San Diego, CA this May. Her presentations are both on Monday, 5/29. Below you find the abstract for her 9:30am talk:

Many interventions have been designed to help users improve their digital safety habits. At the same time, many individuals would like to have better protection, but aren’t sure what material to trust or where to get accurate, timely and actionable information. There is a gap in our understanding of how individuals search for and learn about digital safety information. This research is to aid in theory development to better understand this process. Twenty-one interviews were conducted with seven individuals from three distinct age cohorts (Millennials, Boomers, and Older Adults). I probed for differences in the information search process in the topics of: health, shopping, crime, and digital safety. The findings showed that rather than age, normative user behaviors (Internet cultures) were primary drivers in the individuals’ search and selection process. A major barrier to seeking and acting on information in this realm is not knowing who to trust.


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