Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
cultural orientation, profile picture, self-presentation, social motivation
Social and Behavioral Sciences
The goal of this research is to explore the differences in the motivation of profile picture selection on social media using survey methodology. Prior research regarding profile pictures has focused on the reception of users, but the motivations behind choosing profile pictures remain unanswered. The study focuses on the profile pictures selecting process, which is the process behind users’ choice of pictures that appear with their name and biography on social media accounts. The study will compare social media users in China and the United States to explore whether users from different cultural backgrounds (i.e., independence or interdependence) report different profile picture motivations (i.e., self-expression, self-awareness, social belongingness, and impression management), and whether these motivations and cultural orientation result in different preferences for types of profile pictures (e.g., romantic, socialize, close up).
Jiang, Ruochen, "Differences in Social Media Profile Picture Selection Motivation: A Comparison Between Chinese and U.S. Users" (2018). Theses - ALL. 282.