Awkward encounters of an "other" kind: Collective self-presentation and face threat on facebook

Eden Litt, Erin Spottswood, Jeremy Birnholtz, Jeff Hancock, Madeline E. Smith, Lindsay Reynolds

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

59 Scopus citations


While we tend to think of self-presentation as a process executed by the self, reputation management on social network sites, like Facebook, is increasingly viewed as a collective endeavor. The information users share about one another can have significant impacts on impression formation, and at times this other-generated content may be face threatening, or challenging to one's desired selfpresentation. However, we know little about the nature of these other-generated face threats and the ways that people perceive them. Using an online survey of 150 Facebook users, we report on what these users consider to be other-generated face threats and how they feel after experiencing them. Results suggest that many face threats result from other Facebook users neglecting or misunderstanding a target's audience and/or selfpresentation goals, as well as a target's fear of creating an unwanted association with another Facebook user. Experience of these threats is affected by both individual and situational factors. We also report on a new unique measure capturing Facebook skills.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCSCW 2014 - Proceedings of the 17th ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Number of pages12
ISBN (Print)9781450325400
StatePublished - 2014
Event17th ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing, CSCW 2014 - Baltimore, MD, United States
Duration: Feb 15 2014Feb 19 2014

Publication series

NameProceedings of the ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work, CSCW


Other17th ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing, CSCW 2014
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityBaltimore, MD


  • Audience
  • Face
  • Face threats
  • Facebook
  • Facebook skills scale
  • Privacy
  • Self-monitoring
  • Skill
  • Social media

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Networks and Communications

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