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Alcohol, Sex and Illegal Activities: An Analysis of Selected Facebook Central Photos in Fifty States.

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The purpose of this research study was to evaluate the central photos of 150 students in 50 states participating in Facebook for evidence of alcohol consumption, illegal activities and portrayal of sexually inappropriate behaviors (including nudity or partial nudity). Because the media has frequently reported evidence of these behaviors in Facebook, the researchers wished to conduct a formal, scientific investigation to determine the actual rate of occurrence of these behaviors as portrayed in Facebook by college students. Components of the investigation included both a pilot and key research study. A checklist/inventory rating form developed from the pilot study was utilized to facilitate the analysis process that included pre-selected settings, actions, events and people as well as spaces for writing in additional descriptors as the need arose. Alcohol was included in approximately 9% of the central photos, some photos were sexually suggestive (2.7%), and one photo contained partial nudity (0.7%). These statistics clearly indicate that the incidence of such negative depictions are far less frequent that the media seems to indicate. (Contains 8 tables.)

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Author:Watson, Sandy White; Smith, Zachary; Driver, Jennifer
Publication:ERIC: Reports
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 22, 2006
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