Miriam J. Metzger

Miriam J. Metzger
University of California, Santa Barbara | UCSB · Department of Communication

About

66
Publications
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9,623
Citations

Publications

Publications (66)
Chapter
This chapter examines privacy as a multilevel concept. While current conceptualizations of privacy tend to focus on the individual level, technological advancements are making group privacy increasingly important to understand. This chapter offers a typology of both groups and group privacy to establish a framework for conceptualizing how privacy o...
Article
Full-text available
Research typically presumes that people believe misinformation and propagate it through their social networks. Yet, a wide range of motivations for sharing misinformation might impact its spread, as well as people’s belief of it. By examining research on motivations for sharing news information generally, and misinformation specifically, we derive...
Chapter
This chapter begins with a case study of Strava, a fitness app that inadvertently exposed sensitive military information even while protecting individual users' information privacy. The case study is analyzed as an example of how recent advances in algorithmic group inference technologies threaten privacy, both for individuals and for groups. It th...
Chapter
This chapter begins with a case study of Strava, a fitness app that inadvertently exposed sensitive military information even while protecting individual users' information privacy. The case study is analyzed as an example of how recent advances in algorithmic group inference technologies threaten privacy, both for individuals and for groups. It th...
Article
Full-text available
Social media platforms rarely provide data to misinformation researchers. This is problematic as platforms play a major role in the diffusion and amplification of mis- and disinformation narratives. Scientists are often left working with partial or biased data and must rush to archive relevant data as soon as it appears on the platforms, before it...
Article
Source credibility is an ancient topic that has been the focus of renewed and sustained research in the last three‐quarters of a century. Although originally situated in the context of persuasion and conceived as the believability of a source, research has revealed source credibility to be a multidimensional concept consisting of many factors, the...
Article
An experiment using a representative sample of US. Internet users in the context of online encyclopedias is conducted to understand how the type of information source (expert-generated, user-generated, or hybrid [both expert- and user-generated]) and message sidedness (one- versus two-sided) affect perceived information credibility. Additionally, i...
Article
Machine learning and data mining threaten personal privacy, and many tools exist to help users protect their privacy (e.g., available privacy settings on Facebook, anonymization and encryption of personal data, etc.). But such technologies also pose threats to "group privacy," which is a concept scholars know relatively little about. Moreover, ther...
Conference Paper
The perceived credibility of information plays a major role in information selection and influence (Metzger & Flanagin, 2015). Accordingly, past research has examined people's information selection and their decision outcomes, in both web and social media environments (e.g., Knobloch-Westerwick, 2015; Winter & Krämer, 2012). Yet, in spite of this r...
Article
This study examines the effects of profile browsing on social network sites (SNSs) on social capital via information propagation between users. We analyze data from a study of 42 million users of the Chinese equivalent of Facebook called Renren, with over 1.8 million profile browsing events collected unobtrusively from the network to understand the...
Article
For millions of workers, online job listings provide the first point of contact to potential employers. As a result, job listings and their word choices can significantly affect the makeup of the responding applicant pool. Here, we study the effects of potentially gender-biased terminology in job listings, and their impact on job applicants, using...
Article
Today, the internet serves a wealth of news sources that encourages selective exposure to attitude-consistent and likeminded information. Several cues have been proposed to influence selective exposure, including partisanship, familiarity, and differential framing techniques. This study investigates the effects of news brand partisanship and news l...
Article
Comparatively optimistic people feel that they are less susceptible to risks than are others. This study investigated predictors and outcomes of comparative optimism about privacy risks on Facebook. Results from a nationally representative survey of adult U.S. Facebook users (N = 1,156) show that users exhibit comparative optimism in believing that...
Article
The privacy calculus established that online self-disclosures are based on a cost-benefit tradeoff. For the context of SNSs, however, the privacy calculus still needs further support as most studies consist of small student samples and analyze self-disclosure only, excluding self-withdrawal (e.g., the deletion of posts), which is essential in SNS c...
Article
This study investigated the effects of message and social cues on selective exposure to political information in a social media environment. Based on the heuristic-systematic model, we hypothesized that readers' selective consideration of specific cues can be explained by situational motivations. In an experiment (N = 137), subjects primed with mot...
Article
Selective exposure research indicates that news consumers tend to seek out attitude-consistent information and avoid attitude-challenging information. This study examines online news credibility and cognitive dissonance as theoretical explanations for partisan selective exposure behavior. After viewing an attitudinally consistent, challenging, or p...
Article
Full-text available
Taking the logic of online connective action from an information-processing viewpoint, an online experiment (N = 208) was done to examine whether individuals’ cognitive elaboration on messages received from different sources (personal: friends, family, vs. impersonal: organization) mediates their willingness to engage in connective-type collective...
Article
This study investigates comparative optimism—whereby people perceive themselves as relatively invulnerable to risks as compared to others—in the evaluation of online information credibility by children and their parents. Results of a representative national survey of Internet users revealed significant antecedents of children's and parents' compara...
Article
Young people are increasingly turning to the Internet more than to traditional media and information sources to find information. Yet, research demonstrates suboptimal online information literacy among youth today, suggesting potential shortcomings in young people’s information consumption behaviors. To assess this, this study investigates several...
Article
This study introduces the concept of social media self-efficacy, or a person’s perceived ability to reach desired outcomes in the social media environment, and examines the relationship between social media self-efficacy and how people evaluate information found online. Results of a survey of a representative sample of adult Internet users in the U...
Article
Proficiency in digital literacy refers to the ability to read and write using online sources, and includes the ability to select sources relevant to the task, synthesize information into a coherent message, and communicate the message with an audience. The present study examines the determinants of digital literacy proficiency by asking 150 student...
Article
Although extremely popular, electronic commerce environments often lack information that has traditionally served to ensure trust among exchange partners. Digital technologies, however, have created new forms of “electronic word-of-mouth,” which offer new potential for gathering credible information that guides consumer behaviors. We conducted a na...
Article
This panel addresses information credibility issues in the context of social media. During this panel, participants will discuss people's credibility perceptions of online content in social media from the perspectives of both content contributors and consumers. Each panelist will bring her own perspective on credibility issues in various social med...
Article
Networked digital media present new challenges for people to locate information that they can trust. At the same time, societal reliance on information that is available solely or primarily via the Internet is increasing. This article discusses how and why digitally networked communication environments alter traditional notions of trust, and presen...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Mobile networking researchers have long searched for large-scale, fine-grained traces of human movement, which have remained elusive for both privacy and logistical reasons. Recently, researchers have begun to focus on geosocial mobility traces, e.g. Foursquare checkin traces, because of their availability and scale. But are we conceding correctnes...
Article
The warranting principle, signaling theory, and theories of informational social influence suggest conditions when either user-generated information, or information originating from traditional experts, might be privileged online. A random sample of 1207 U.S.-based adults with Internet access completed an experiment that manipulated the source, vol...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
As popular tools for spreading spam and malware, Sybils (or fake accounts) pose a serious threat to online communities such as Online Social Networks (OSNs). Today, sophisticated attackers are creating realistic Sybils that effectively befriend legitimate users, rendering most automated Sybil detection techniques ineffective. In this paper, we expl...
Article
Full-text available
As popular tools for spreading spam and malware, Sybils (or fake accounts) pose a serious threat to online communities such as Online Social Networks (OSNs). Today, sophisticated attackers are creating realistic Sybils that effectively befriend legitimate users, rendering most automated Sybil detection techniques ineffective. In this paper, we expl...
Article
Recent technological changes have created a radically different information environment from the one that existed even a few decades ago. Rather than coming from a small number of sources, each with a substantial investment in the information production and delivery processes, information is increasingly provided by a wide range of sources, many of...
Article
The vast amount of information available online makes the origin of information, its quality, and its veracity less clear than ever before, shifting the burden on individual users to assess information credibility. Contemporary youth are a particularly important group to consider with regard to credibility issues because of the tension between thei...
Article
This article invokes research on information seeking and evaluation to address how providers of evidence-based medical information can use Web 2.0 technologies to increase access to, enliven users' experiences with, and enrich the quality of the information available. In an ideal scenario, evidence-based medical information can take appropriate adv...
Article
Full-text available
Using Shrum's (1996) heuristic processing model as an explanatory mechanism, we propose that people who hold vivid autobiographical memories for a specific past experience with media violence will overstate the prevalence of real-world crime versus individuals without vivid memories. We also explore the effects of frequency and recency on social re...
Article
This study examined the perceived credibility of user-generated (i.e. Wikipedia) versus more expertly provided online encyclopedic information (i.e. Citizendium, and the online version of the Encyclopædia Britannica) across generations. Two large-scale surveys with embedded quasi-experiments were conducted: among 11–18-year-olds living at home and...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Although extremely popular, electronic commerce transactions often lack information that has traditionally served to ensure trust and credibility among exchange partners. The capacity of digital media to aggregate information and connect individuals to one another, however, offers new potential for determining information quality and credibility. T...
Article
This study examined the perceived credibility of user-generated (i.e. Wikipedia) versus more expertly provided online encyclopedic information (i.e. Citizendium, and the online version of the Encyclopædia Britannica) across generations. Two large-scale surveys with embedded quasi-experiments were conducted: among 11–18-year-olds living at home and...
Article
A deep understanding of user social interaction in social network sites (SNSs) can provide important insights into questions of human social and relational behavior, as well as shape the design of new social platforms and applications. Recent studies have shown that a majority of user interactions on SNSs are latent interactions-passive actions suc...
Article
The tremendous amount of information available online has resulted in considerable research on information and source credibility. The vast majority of scholars, however, assume that individuals work in isolation to form credibility opinions and that people must assess information credibility in an effortful and time-consuming manner. Focus group d...
Conference Paper
While credibility research is highly interdisciplinary, there is little interaction across researchers from various disciplines. This is unfortunate, as each disciplinary approach can inform the other, and together have potential to improve the corpus of credibility research. Researchers from fields as diverse as education, communication, psycholog...
Conference Paper
This study examined young people's trust of Wikipedia as an information resource. A large scale probability based survey with embedded quasi experiments was conducted with 2,747 children in the U.S. ranging from 11 to 18 years old. Results show that young people find Wikipedia to be fairly credible, but also exhibit an awareness of potential proble...
Article
In just two decades, the Internet has integrated itself into our lives as an important, if not indispensable, tool for information and communication. Millions of people perform searches each day looking for a wide variety of information, including medical and health information
Article
Full-text available
The proliferation of information sources as a result of networked computers and other interconnected devices has prompted significant changes in the amount, availability, and nature of geographic information. Among the more significant changes is the increasing amount of readily available volunteered geographic information. Although volunteered inf...
Article
This article summarizes much of what is known from the communication and information literacy fields about the skills that Internet users need to assess the credibility of online information. The article reviews current rec- ommendations for credibility assessment, empirical research on how users determine the credibility of Inter- net information,...
Article
Data from 574 participants were used to assess perceptions of message, site, and sponsor credibility across four genres of websites; to explore the extent and effects of verifying web-based information; and to measure the relative influence of sponsor familiarity and site attributes on perceived credibility.The results show that perceptions of cred...
Article
This study applies Petronio’s Communication Privacy Management theory (CPM) to understand the tension between information disclosure and privacy within e-commerce relationships. It proposes that consumers manage their privacy concerns through decisions to reveal or conceal information about themselves in interactions with online retailers. The stud...
Article
Full-text available
This study examines the relationship between young people's exposure to media violence and their aggressive political opinions (APO), which were defined as sup-port for positions that involve forceful resolution to social or political issues. Students from 2 U.S. universities completed surveys assessing their APO, exposure to violent media, authori...
Article
This study examines the role that communication plays in fostering trust and disclosure in electronic commerce exchanges. In particular, this research explores how characteristics of online vendors and consumers interact with Web site communications to affect consumer behavior online. The study relies on two relatively recent models of electronic e...
Article
An experiment assessed the effects of exposing college students to beer commercials with images of activities that would be dangerous to un-dertake while drinking. Those exposed to the ads were more likely to believe in the social benefits of drinking than those not exposed, partic-ularly among males. Those participants who reported seeing people e...
Article
This study proposes and tests a model of online information disclosure to commercial Web sites, which is an important component of e-commerce. Based on social exchange theory and research on self-disclosure in interpersonal contexts, the model emphasizes the role of trust and past online behavior in the disclosure of personal information to a comme...
Article
Following Gouran (1994), the authors proposed four hypotheses that predict the probability of computer-mediated groups (CMGs) endorsing proposals based on (a) the number of reasons offered for them, (b) the number of members advancing these reasons, (c) the net number of positive reactions to the reasons advanced, and (d) the development of support...
Article
This field experiment examined the effects of the sex of Web site authors and Web site visitors on perceptions of the credibility of personal Web pages. Participants viewed male and female Web pages created for this study, patterned after personal pages on the Web, and assessed sponsor, message, and Web site credibility. Results revealed that men r...
Article
Concerns about the potentially dubious nature of online information and users' ability to evaluate it appropriately prompted this research on college students' use of Web-based information, their perceptions of information credibility, and their online verification behaviors. Two studies were conducted to address these issues. Results of the first...
Article
The ability to monitor and record Internet users' personal information has raised fears about online privacy. Consequently, consumers have put pressure on the federal government and the online industry to respond appropriately to their privacy concerns. This study uses Edelman's theory of symbolic politics to assess the congruence between public co...
Article
Technological capabilities and features of the Internet and World Wide Web have prompted concerns about the verity of online information, the credibility of new media, and the new responsibilities placed on media consumers. Reflecting these concerns, scholars have shown a renewed interest in the credibility of sources, their messages, and the media...
Article
The proliferation of new communication technologies over the last 2 decades has increased opportunities for audience activity by offering more choices and greater control aver the communication process for media consumers. However, extant research on the degree of user activity with new media portrays conflicting views of audience members as more a...
Article
Full-text available
Many people no longer consider the term mass communication to be an accurate descriptor of what it is that some communication scholars study. Developments in computing and information technologies over the last 2 decades have blurred the boundaries between the forms of communicating around which the academic field of communication was developed. Co...
Article
Although a significant amount of research has focused on traditional media choice and use, and even on some ‘new’ media, these studies have either neglected the Internet and World Wide Web or were conducted prior to their recent popularity. This study offers a novel exploration of individuals' use of three Internet functions (information retrieval,...
Article
Using Feenberg's (1995a, 1995b) concept of the technical code of technological artifacts, this essay examines the evolution and current status of the Internet/World Wide Web. The idea of technical code—the cultural and social values and choices that become manifest in a technology's physical and structural forms—helps to isolate and uncover issues...
Article
Evidence reviewed here suggests that people are motivated to achieve closure on news stories that are left unresolved by retrospectively inferring a plausible resolution to the issue or event using their cognitive schemata. Data from 264 respondents revealed that people do infer closure under certain circumstances, particularly when they are less i...
Article
People increasingly rely on Internet and web-based information despite evidence that it is potentially inaccurate and biased. Therefore, this study sought to assess people's perceptions of the credibility of various categories of Internet information compared to similar information provided by other media. The 1,041 respondents also were asked abou...
Article
Following the proposal of Rubin & Rubin (1985) that scholars turn their attention to the study of the intersection between mass and interpersonal communication, this paper reviews literature comparing different forms and contexts of communication. Underlying the motivations for both mediated and face‐to‐face communication is a basic need for social...
Article
For teachers no less than students, a key 21st-century skill is to accurately assess the credibility of online information yet, incredibly, there’s been little in the way of empirical research, until now. Andrew Flanagin and Miriam Metzger report.

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