“A Streetcar Named Instagram Desire”: Evolutionary Psychological Perspectives on the Multifarious Human Desires That Shape Instagram Selfie-and-Groupfie Cultures

S. Venus Jin*, Ehri Ryu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Instagram not only offers an arena for the fulfillment of basic human desires but also cultivates new types of multifaceted desires and consumptions in Web 2.0 environments. This study aims to examine a wide variety of dispositional, psychological, and attitudinal predictors of Instagram consumption and selfie-and-groupfie cultures. Three cross-sectional surveys (Study 1 (N = 108); Study 2 (N = 140); Study 3 (N = 557)) were conducted, and empirical data were analyzed using structural equation modeling (SEM) with Mplus 8.0. Study 1 shows associations among appearance-related self-confidence, appearance-related actual–ideal self-discrepancy, materialism, and Instagram consumption. Study 2 confirms relationships among weight status perception, self-esteem, eating disorder, malicious envy, and Instagram consumption intensity. Study 3 further demonstrates dynamic associations among eating disorders, perceived mate value, narcissistic grandiosity, envy, social comparison, intrasexual competition for mates, and frequency of posting selfies/groupfies on Instagram. Theoretical contributions to the psychosocial and human aspects of the Web 2.0 digital culture, managerial implications for online dating cultures, and practical implications for consumption markets including social media-based health communication, cultural communication, and marketing communication are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number396
JournalBehavioral Sciences
Volume12
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2022

Keywords

  • Instagram culture
  • evolutionary psychology
  • selfies and groupfies
  • social media
  • social networking sites
  • structural equation modeling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology
  • Development
  • Genetics
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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