Article

“Fitspiration” on Social Media: A Content Analysis of Gendered Images

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Abstract

Background: "Fitspiration" (also known as "fitspo") aims to inspire individuals to exercise and be healthy, but emerging research indicates exposure can negatively impact female body image. Fitspiration is frequently accessed on social media; however, it is currently unclear the degree to which messages about body image and exercise differ by gender of the subject. Objective: The aim of our study was to conduct a content analysis to identify the characteristics of fitspiration content posted across social media and whether this differs according to subject gender. Methods: Content tagged with #fitspo across Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr was extracted over a composite 30-minute period. All posts were analyzed by 2 independent coders according to a codebook. Results: Of the 415/476 (87.2%) relevant posts extracted, most posts were on Instagram (360/415, 86.8%). Most posts (308/415, 74.2%) related thematically to exercise, and 81/415 (19.6%) related thematically to food. In total, 151 (36.4%) posts depicted only female subjects and 114/415 (27.5%) depicted only male subjects. Female subjects were typically thin but toned; male subjects were often muscular or hypermuscular. Within the images, female subjects were significantly more likely to be aged under 25 years (P<.001) than the male subjects, to have their full body visible (P=.001), and to have their buttocks emphasized (P<.001). Male subjects were more likely to have their face visible in the post (P=.005) than the female subjects. Female subjects were more likely to be sexualized than the male subjects (P=.002). Conclusions: Female #fitspo subjects typically adhered to the thin or athletic ideal, and male subjects typically adhered to the muscular ideal. Future research and interventional efforts should consider the potential objectifying messages in fitspiration, as it relates to both female and male body image.

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... Fitness content on Instagram (also referred to as fitspiration) has become instrumental in formulating a visual representation of health today. Recent content analyses of fitspiration posts observed that the vast majority of images depicted women with thin, visibly toned bodies-known as the 'fit ideal'-implying that only a certain body type can be fit and strengthening the association between thinness and optimal health, which has proven detrimental to women's psychological well-being [1,21,22]. ...
... To date, the majority of social media content analyses have focused on specific hashtags (e.g., #fitspiration, #fitspo, #thinspiration) [21,23,24], and to the authors' knowledge, no analysis has examined Instagram fitness content more generally according to the type of content creator or conducted a comparison between content from different time points. A more nuanced understanding of media messaging around weight, body shape, and body transformation-as well as any changes in this messaging across time-could shed light on key risk factors for body dissatisfaction and associated affective and behavioural outcomes. ...
... To ensure that features of the fit ideal body (including associated lack of fitness focus) and aspects of objectification (including sexual objectification) could be captured, variables relating to image purpose, body depiction, and sexualisation were developed based on research by Carrotte et al. [21], Deighton-Smith and Bell [22], and Tiggemann and Zaccardo [23]. ...
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Body dissatisfaction is among the most common mental health challenges experienced by women and has been identified as a risk factor for disordered eating. Research has found that exposure to social media images depicting thin, muscular bodies, often dubbed ‘fitspiration’, may contribute to body dissatisfaction. Image-centred social media platforms, such as Instagram, have rising popularity among adolescents and young adults. However, little is known about the content of images produced by different fitness-related sources, such as those from fitness brands compared with individual users, and how fitness content on social media is evolving over time. This study sought to determine whether Instagram content varied between female fitness influencers and brands and how this content changed between 2019 and 2021. A longitudinal content analysis was conducted on a sample of 400 Instagram images using a coding scheme developed specifically for this project. The scheme coded images for fit ideal body depiction, fitness focus, objectification, and sexualisation. Chi-square tests indicated that female fitness influencer content was more sexualised and portrayed more of the fit ideal, while fitness brands produced more Instagram content with a fitness focus. There were no significant overall longitudinal changes for any of the four key variables. However, when looking at longitudinal changes by account type, fitness-focused influencer content increased while fitness-focused brand content decreased over time. These findings highlight discernible differences in content produced by different Instagram account types. It points future research towards the consideration of potential moderating factors, such as account type, when exploring the impact of social media images on body image and mental health.
... In December 2016, the search for the hashtag "#fitspiration" on Instagram resulted in nearly 10 million photos already [18]. In addition, the number of "influencers" and models who display inspirational photos with motivational text and healthy food suggestions is currently high [19]. In theory, fitspiration content has the potential to positively influence and promote individuals' health and wellbeing through exercise and diet, and in fact, individuals who follow this trend report that they are inspired to be physically active and eat healthily [20]. ...
... In theory, fitspiration content has the potential to positively influence and promote individuals' health and wellbeing through exercise and diet, and in fact, individuals who follow this trend report that they are inspired to be physically active and eat healthily [20]. However, these ideals remain difficult to achieve for most individuals without resorting to unhealthy behaviors [4,21], raising some important concerns, particularly regarding individuals' body image [19]. ...
... In addition, studies clearly show that young adults use media more frequently than older adults [29]. Fitspiration images typically display only one body type, a lean and muscular body [30], promoting exercise and diet with an increased focus on appearance rather than on health and well-being [19]. ...
Article
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Purpose Fitspiration (also known as “fitspo”) aims to inspire individuals to exercise and have healthy habits, but emerging research indicates that exposure to it can have a negative impact on body image. This study aims to analyze the relationship between individuals’ exposure to fitspiration content and body image measures or associated variables (e.g., appearance comparison). Materials and methods A comprehensive search of peer-reviewed papers published in English between 2000 and August 2022 was conducted in PubMed, PsycINFO and Google Scholar, based on the PICOS model. To be included, studies had to analyze the relationship between exposure to fitspiration content (I) and body image or associated variables (O) in adolescents and adults (P). Study methodological quality was assessed using an adaptation of the EPHPP Quality Assessment Tool for Quantitative Studies. Outcome data were synthesized narratively and by vote counting. Results Twenty articles met the eligibility criteria and were included. Nineteen studies analyzed the relationship between fitspiration and body image, twelve analyzed the association between exposure to fitspiration and physical appearance comparison tendencies, and nine analyzed the association between fitspiration content and mood. One study analyzed the association between frequency of viewing fitspiration content and motives for exercise. Results showed that exposure to "fitspiration" increased individuals’ body dissatisfaction, physical appearance comparisons, and negative mood, especially in younger populations. Conclusions Fitspiration has been seen as a new and prolific digital trend, considered beneficial for health. However, our results showed that fitspo is associated with negative body image, especially in younger populations that are more exposed to this content. Most of the studies were conducted in females and young age participants, which limits the extrapolation of results by gender and age. Future studies are needed to confirm and extend these findings. Level of Evidence Level 1, Systematic Review.
... gesunder Lifestyle und tun dies vornehmlich auf Instagram (vgl. Carrotte, Prichard & Lim, 2017). Um den Zugriff auf ihre Inhalte thematisch geclustert zu erleichtern, verwenden sie überdies häufig den Hashtag #fitspiration als ein Amalgam der Begriffe Fitness und Inspiration. ...
... An diese Studie schließt sich eine Untersuchung von Carrotte, Prichard & Lim (2017) an, welche sich ebenfalls mit der quantiativen Inhaltsanalyse von Bildern beschäftigt, die in den Bereich Fitness fallen. Anders als Tiggemann und Zaccardo (2016) fokussieren Carrotte, Prichard und Lim (2017) den Hashtag #fitspo, welcher eine Abkürzung von #fitspiration darstellt und ebenfalls als populäre Markierung von Fitnessinhalten auf Instagram geläufig ist. ...
... (...) Female #fitspo subjects typically adhered to the thin or athletic ideal, and male subjects typically adhered to the muscular ideal." (Carrotte, Prichard & Lim, 2017). ...
Thesis
Der Waschbrettbauch glänzt, die Beine sind straff und gebräunt, das Lächeln ist weiß. In sozialen Medien erfreuen sich Bilder und Videos derartigen Inhalts zunehmender Beliebtheit. Nicht erst seit der Covid-19 Pandemie und dem kometenhaften Aufstieg der Pamela Reif, sind Fitness-Gurus vielbeachtete und einflussreiche Stars. Vor allem auf Instagram wird millionenfach ein Lifestyle propagiert, der voll und ganz auf Fitness ausgerichtet ist. Sucht man indes nach wissenschaftlichen Erkenntnissen zu diesem gesellschaftlich hoch aktuellen und relevanten Forschungsfeld, wird man kaum fündig. Insbesondere die Protagonisten des Phänomens, die Fitness-Gurus selbst, scheinen einen blinden Fleck in der sportwissenschaftlichen Forschung abzubilden. Die vorliegende Studie nimmt das Missverhältnis gesellschaftlicher Omnipräsenz und wissenschaftlicher Abstinenz zum Anlass für eine qualitativ-explorative Studie mit Fitness-Gurus. Nachdem ein kultursoziologisches Fundament Erklärungsansätze für das große gesellschaftliche Interesse am Thema Fitness offeriert, kommen erfolgreiche Fitness-Gurus der Plattform Instagram selbst zu Wort. Sie berichten über ihren Weg zum Fitness-Guru und ihre Innensichten auf das Phänomen Fitness in sozialen Medien. Eine Auswertung der Daten entlang der Grounded Theory bietet so erstmals einen wissenschaftlich fundierten Blick hinter die Kulissen des Fitness-Booms auf Instagram.
... Social media may be a particularly relevant source of muscularity-related appearance pressure, given the emergence of "fitspiration" content on social media, which markets a thin and muscular appearance ideal to adolescent girls via objectifying images of young, thin, toned women (Carrotte, Prichard, & Lim, 2017). Fitspiration content is popular on social media and experimental exposure to fitspiration content among young women has been shown to cause subsequently higher body dissatisfaction via social appearance comparisons (Tiggemann & Zaccardo, 2015). ...
... In the current study, social media appearance pressures were indirectly associated with appearance esteem through thin ideal internalization and body comparison. Appearance ideals are likely promoted on social media through "thinspiration," "fitspiration," and other highly-edited or influencer-created visual content (Carrotte et al., 2017;Ghaznavi & Taylor, 2015). Research suggests that engaging with photos on social media may promote internalization of unrealistically thin body ideals, resulting in worsened body image . ...
Article
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The tripartite influence model stipulates that appearance pressures from three sources (family, peers, traditional media) lead adolescent girls to internalize a thin appearance ideal and engage in social appearance comparisons, resulting in body dissatisfaction (Thompson et al., 1999). Social media is a modern source of appearance pressure and, increasingly, adolescent girls desire an appearance that is both thin and muscular. The current study of U.S. adolescent girls (n = 543, Mage = 15.58, 49.17% Latina, 28.18% White, 8.66% Black, 7.55% Asian, 6.45% multiracial/another race/ethnicity) incorporates social media appearance pressures and muscular ideal internalization into the tripartite influence model using structural equation modeling. Findings provided support for this adapted model: family, peers, traditional media, and social media contributed to body dissatisfaction. All appearance pressure sources were associated with appearance esteem via thin ideal internalization. Peer and social media pressures were both related to greater muscular ideal internalization, which was not significantly associated with appearance esteem. Social media was the only source of pressure associated with appearance esteem through both thin ideal internalization and body comparison. Findings highlight adolescent girls’ pressure to look both thin and muscular, as well as the role of social media as a prominent source of appearance socialization.
... Further, the implications of the use and interpretation of visual media on online platforms has begun to be explored. Focusing primarily on the role of the "selfie" for understanding ourselves, performing our identities, and interpreting others', scholars have argued that images posted to social media platforms may potentially reproduce and reinforce power structures, specifically related to immigration, in addition to representing the negotiation and practice of identities, such as gender and sexual identities (Carrotte et al., 2017;Chouliaraki, 2017;Hand, 2017). ...
... The desire to understand how ride itself is portrayed by participants and organizers to other community members and their social media followers overall necessitated a focus on images associated with the Ride. A lack of standardized, targeted data collection strategies for social media posts, with some scholars preferring a manual approach (Carrotte et al., 2017) while others rely on web code to sort and collect posts (Borra & Rieder, 2014;Peruta & Shields, 2017), necessitated the development of a sampling and analysis strategy. ...
Article
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The annual Chief Big Foot Memorial Ride represents the longest continuous example of Lakota memorial and resistance rides in contemporary Lakota activism. First held in 1986, this commemoration of the journey of Chief Big Foot’s band of Lakotas and the subsequent Wounded Knee Massacre in 1890 now reaches beyond the confines of the ride itself through the use of social media profiles that serve to both publicize and document the ride. This article seeks to understand the way that photographs from the rides influence the types and amount of engagement it receives on social media. Using a qualitative and quantitative approach, 304 images and their associated engagements from the 2018 ride were analyzed using content analysis and a grounded theory approach. This revealed that certain characteristics gave rise to the construction of a counterpublic around this ride. Findings suggest that both the content of photos and types of authors for posts influenced the number and types of engagements received by certain photographs. Given the relative isolation of many Indigenous communities in the Americas, these findings suggest that certain strategies for social media posts by Indigenous social movements can overcome these barriers to spread their message to a wider audience through strategic use of imagery associated with these movements.
... Actually, the pervasive use of online platforms (including creation and sharing self-focused visual content on social media) seems to provide a novel and highly accessible medium for men's and women's socializing with social pressure and self-objectification experiences (Bell et al., 2018;Caso et al., 2019;Cohen et al., 2018;de Vries & Peter, 2013;Manago et al., 2015). Indeed, objectification cues in the media guide viewers' attention to a strategic posing/ posturing, emphasize visual presentation, close-ups of a specific body part, highlighting externally perceivable traits such as body appearance and sexualizing bodies (Carrotte et al., 2017;Rohlinger, 2002;Tiggemann & Zaccardo, 2018). Moreover, social media use is particularly interesting due to the known influence of peers on social comparison. ...
... Indeed, the literature suggested that the nature of engagement and the features of SNS use may be associated in the development and maintenance of body image dissatisfaction (Ryding & Kuss, 2020) and selfobjectification (Boursier et al., 2020b;Gioia et al., 2020). In recent years, research focusing on the rela-ing number of studies have highlighted that self-objectification is also experienced by males (Boursier et al., 2020a;Carrotte et al., 2017;Daniel & Bridges, 2010;Daniel et al., 2014;Dakanalis et al., 2012aDakanalis et al., , b, 2015Gioia et al., 2020;Holland & Tiggemann, 2016;Karsay et al., 2018;Manago et al., 2015;Moradi, 2010;Moradi & Huang, 2008;Morrison et al., 2003;Murashka et al., 2020;Knauss et al., 2008;Vandenbosch & Eggermont, 2013). Moreover, evidence shows that men are becoming increasingly and specifically concerned about their own body appearance (Parks & Read, 1997;Pope et al., 2000;Ridgeway & Tylka, 2005;Strelan & Hargreaves, 2005a). ...
Article
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Objective: According to the objectification framework, media pressure toward body models promotes the internalization of beauty ideals that negatively influence individuals' body image and self-esteem. Historically, women have been the main target of sociocultural pressures. However, research has recently suggested that self-objectification is a male phenomenon as well, which can be inscribed in men's body experiences. Nevertheless, fewer studies have specifically focused on the male experience and general consequences of body-objectification are yet to be extensively analyzed regarding males' body image features. The current cross-sectional study explores the consequences of body-objectification on male body esteem, specifically testing the predictive role of exercising/dietary habits, body-objectification features, and SNS-related practices on male body esteem. Method: A total of 238 male participants (mean age = 24.28 years, SD = 4.32) have been involved in an online survey. Three hierarchical analyses were performed to test the influence of objectified body consciousness and social networking-related experiences (i.e. Instagram intensity use, photo manipulation, selfie feedback investment) on young men's body esteem with specific reference to the weight, appearance, and attribution features of the Body Esteem Scale. Results: Findings highlighted that body shame played an interesting key role, influencing negatively all the body esteem dimensions, thus highlighting that attention needs to be deserved on this feature of OBC regarding males' experience. On the contrary, appearance control-related dimensions positively influenced body esteem. Overall, findings confirmed that objectification theory can adequately mark a pathway by which media imagery is internalized also by men and may negatively affect their body esteem. Conclusions: Despite some limitations, this study may contribute to enlarging our knowledge on male body image and self-objectification experience and support literature shattering the stereotype that body dissatisfaction is a "female-exclusive" issue. Likewise, beyond some questioning positions, these findings also encourage further exploration of a healthier "control dimension", including body appearance-related activities and beliefs.
... This has become exaggerated in the ultra slim bodies found in fashion models (Tovée et al., 1997;Jestratijevic et al., 2020), and in its most extreme form has manifested in the social media trends of thinspiration and bonespiration (Talbot et al., 2017). More recently, this fixation on body fat has been compounded by the rise of the "athletic" ideal, epitomized by the fitspiration trend on social media, which portrays a body shape that is not only very slender, but also toned and muscular (Benton and Karazsia, 2015;Tiggemann andZaccardo, 2015, 2018;Boepple and Thompson, 2016;Carrotte et al., 2017;Bozsik et al., 2018). This body type is potentially even harder to achieve than a thin body and can lead to greater dissatisfaction than the previous thin female ideal (Uhlmann et al., 2018), with links to negative psychological outcomes (Cunningham et al., 2019). ...
... The muscular ideal has long been propagated in Western culture as shown by the appearance of male models (Frederick et al., 2005;Lanzieri and Cook, 2013), film stars (Pope et al., 2000a,b) computer game avatars (Martins et al., 2011), and action figures (Baghurst et al., 2006). It is also now further extended by the hyper muscular male, low adipose bodies in fitspiration content posted on social media (Carrotte et al., 2017;Tiggemann and Zaccardo, 2018). After viewing such content, men are more likely to engage in excessive exercise and to take anabolic steroids with potential negative health outcomes (Cafri et al., 2006;Horwitz et al., 2019;Mossman and Pacey, 2019;Tiggemann and Anderberg, 2020). ...
Article
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We used attractiveness judgements as a proxy to visualize the ideal female and male body for male and female participants and investigated how individual differences in the internalization of cultural ideals influence these representations. In the first of two studies, male and female participants judged the attractiveness of 242 male and female computer-generated bodies which varied independently in muscle and adipose. This allowed us to map changes in attractiveness across the complete body composition space, revealing single peaks for the attractiveness of both men and women. In the second study, we asked our participants to choose the most attractive male and female bodies in a method of adjustment task in which they could independently vary muscle and adipose to create the most attractive body. We asked whether individual differences in internalization of cultural ideals, drive for muscularity, eating disorder symptomatology and depressive symptoms could systematically shift the location of peak attractiveness in body composition space. We found a clear preference by both genders for a male body with high muscle and low adipose, and a toned, low adipose female body. The degree of internalization of cultural ideals predicted large individual differences in the composition of the most attractive bodies.
... In the increasingly digital world and the proliferation of social networking sites (SNS), Instagram has become one of the platforms for everyone to share appearance ideals using a hashtag, #fitspiration (a blended word combining 'fitness' and 'inspiration'). Fitspiration became popular as the channel to promote healthy living focusing on diet and exercise [1,2], but it has eventually developed into a platform mainly hosting the images of thin bodies for females [1,3] and muscular or hypermuscular bodies for males [4], which are associated with an ideal image for many individuals [5][6][7][8][9][10]. ...
... These four parts of the body were the stomach, hips, buttocks, and thighs. These four parts were included as they are more highlighted in fitspiration images [4]. These four items demonstrated an acceptable level of reliability (α = 0.84). ...
Article
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The present study investigated the relationship between internal locus of control and the perceived impact of Instagram fitspiration images on the self with media literacy as the mediating role in this relationship. This study also examined the importance of body mass index (BMI) as a moderating factor in the mediated model, where higher BMIs could weaken the relationship between internal locus of control and the perceived effect of fitspiration images mediated through media literacy. A sample of 321 Malaysian university students who were fitspiration viewers filled out a self-report questionnaire assessing internal locus of control, media literacy, perceived effect of fitspiration images on self, body satisfaction and BMI. The data analysis was performed using SPSS PROCESS macro. Results show that internal locus of control is negatively associated with the perceived impact of fitspiration images on self, mediated by media literacy. However, BMI moderates the mediated relationship such that the negative relationship between internal locus of control and the perceived effect of fitspiration images through media literacy does not exert an effect on those with high BMI. These results accentuate the value of incorporating a potential mediator and moderator into the direct relationship between internal locus of control and perceived effect of media ideals on self to provide an enhanced understanding of this process and offer practical insights about the protective role of media literacy and negative effects of high BMI.
... "Fitspiration" is a popular social media trend primarily observed on Instagram that depicts images of women with lean bodies and athletic appearance, posing in exercise clothing or engaged in fitness pursuits (Carrotte, Prichard, & Lim, 2017;Tiggemann & Zaccardo, 2016). Purportedly intended to inspire users to exercise, content analyses reveal that "fitspiration" disproportionately features sexualized and objectified representations of fit-normative bodies (Carrotte et al., 2017;Tiggemann & Zaccardo, 2016). ...
... "Fitspiration" is a popular social media trend primarily observed on Instagram that depicts images of women with lean bodies and athletic appearance, posing in exercise clothing or engaged in fitness pursuits (Carrotte, Prichard, & Lim, 2017;Tiggemann & Zaccardo, 2016). Purportedly intended to inspire users to exercise, content analyses reveal that "fitspiration" disproportionately features sexualized and objectified representations of fit-normative bodies (Carrotte et al., 2017;Tiggemann & Zaccardo, 2016). Critics argue that "fitspiration" is a reiteration of the thin-ideal disguised with a muscular layer (Homan, McHugh, Wells, Watson & King, 2012), and may be simply "another way to make women feel worse about themselves and their bodies" (Prichard, Kavanagh, Mulgrew, Lim & Tiggemann, 2020, p. 4). ...
Article
Exposure to “fitspiration” may promote exercising for maladaptive weight and appearance reasons in young women. Fitness content depicting higher-weight bodies could promote exercise for adaptive non-appearance motives, and body compassion might protect against the negative effects of “fitspiration” exposure. Two pre-registered experimental studies examined (i) the effects of exposure to fit-normative vs. weight-inclusive Instagram images on young women’s exercise intentions and motivations, and (ii) tested trait body compassion as a moderator of the relationships between image exposure and psychosocial exercise outcomes. Using an online experimental paradigm, young adult women were randomized to view Instagram images representing fit-normative, weight-inclusive, or control conditions and completed state measures of exercise intention and motivation. Study 1 (n = 228) employed a post-test design and found no significant effects of condition on exercise outcomes, nor an effect of body compassion. Using a pre- and post-experimental design in Study 2 (n = 797), participants in the weight-inclusive condition exhibited significantly greater increases in exercise intention and fitness/health motivation, while those in the fit-normative condition exhibited greater increases in weight/appearance motivation, compared to controls. Body compassion was not a significant moderator of the associations between exposure to weight-inclusive vs. fit-normative images and exercise outcomes. Exposure to fit-normative Instagram content may encourage dysfunctional exercise motives in young women. Weight-inclusive imagery may more effectively inspire adaptive exercise intentions and motivations, and future research should investigate how it may be leveraged to improve psychosocial exercise outcomes.
... Self-objectification elements. Ratings for self-objectification were adapted from Carrotte, Prichard, and Lim (2017) and Tiggemann and Zaccardo (2016). Coders interpreted the Instagram image in terms of being an image emphasizing subjects' buttocks and/or breast/ chest (i.e. ...
... The relatively low intercoder reliability statistics of some of the manually coded variables indicate that our results should be interpreted with caution. We would like to point out that establishing a high intercoder reliability with seven coders from subjective real-life materials is extremely challenging (Carrotte, Prichard, and Lim 2017). Nevertheless, the variables included did meet the threshold of inclusiveness based on at least two of the intercoder reliability statistics. ...
Article
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This study addresses the question to which extent individual online self-presentations become more similar globally, due globalisation and digitalisation, or whether ethno-racial identity predisposes individuals’ online self-presentation. That is, we examined the degree to which individuals varying in ethno-racial identity converge or diverge in online self-presentation. A large-scale content analysis was conducted by collecting selfies on Instagram (i.e. #selfietime; N = 3881). Using facial recognition software, selfies were allotted into a specific ethno-racial identity based on race/ethnicity-related appearance features (e.g. Asian, Black, Hispanic, and White identity) as a proxy for externally imposed ethno-racial identity. Results provided some evidence for convergence in online self-construction among selfie-takers, but generally revealed that self-presentations diverge as a function of ethno-racial identity. That is, results showed more convergence between ethno-racial identity for portraying selfies with objectified elements, whereas divergence in online self-presentations occurred for portraying contextualised selves and filter usage. In all, this study examined the complexity of online self-presentation. Here, we extend earlier cross-cultural research by exploring the convergence-divergence paradigm for the role of externally imposed ethno-racial identity in online self-presentation. Findings imply that ethno-racial identity characteristics remain important in manifestations of online self-presentations.
... Much of our knowledge of social media platforms and related user-generated content excludes social representations of Black men [22], focuses heavily on understanding data dissemination [23], and is often focused on Twitter [24,25]. For example, one study examined characteristics of #fitspiration content on multiple social media platforms, finding that the majority of the posts depicted women, and presented imagery of women reinforcing the "thin" ideal, which is negatively associated with unhealthy behaviors [26]. This analysis, among others [27], provides direction for researchers investigating which ideals are most pervasive in reinforcing unhealthy social norms. ...
... This analysis, among others [27], provides direction for researchers investigating which ideals are most pervasive in reinforcing unhealthy social norms. Researchers, then, can develop messages that appropriately counter such norms and, instead, encourage healthy behaviors [26]. Few studies have taken this approach in relation to Black men's health behaviors and mental health, making this a critical focus area. ...
Article
Background: Social media is widely accessible and increasingly utilized. Social media users develop hashtags and visual, text-based imagery to challenge misrepresentations, garner social support, and discuss a variety of mental health issues. Understanding how Black men are represented on social media and are using social media may be an avenue for promoting their engagement with and uptake of digital mental health interventions. Objective: The aim of this study was to conduct a content analysis of posts containing visual and text-based components related to representations of Black men's race, gender, and behaviors. Methods: An exploratory, descriptive content analysis was conducted for 500 Instagram posts to examine characteristics, content, and public engagement of posts containing the hashtags #theblackmancan and #blackboyjoy. Posts were selected randomly and extracted from Instagram using a social network mining tool during Fall 2018 and Spring 2019. A codebook was developed, and all posts were analyzed by 2 independent coders. Analyses included frequency counts and descriptive analysis to determine content and characteristics of posts. Mann-Whitney U tests and Kruskal-Wallis H tests were conducted to assess engagement associated with posts via likes, comments, and video views. Results: Of the 500 posts extracted, most were image based (368/500, 73.6%), 272/500 (54.4%) were posted by an individual and 135/500 (27.0%) by a community organization, 269/500 (53.8%) were posted by individuals from Black populations, and 177/500 (35.4%) posts contained images of only males. Posts depicted images of Black men as fathers (100/500, 20.0%), Black men being celebrated (101/500, 20.2%), and Black men expressing joy (217/500, 43.4%). Posts (127/500, 25.4%) also depicted Black men in relation to gender atypical behavior, such as caring for children or styling their children's hair. Variables related to education and restrictive affection did not show up often in posts. Engagement via likes (median 1671, P<.001), comments (P<.001), and views (P<.001) for posts containing #theblackmancan was significantly higher compared with posts containing #blackboyjoy (median 140). Posts containing elements of celebrating Black men (P=.02) and gender atypical behavior (P<.001) also had significantly higher engagement. Conclusions: This is one of the first studies to look at hashtag use of #blackboyjoy and #theblackmancan. Posts containing #blackboyjoy and #theblackmancan promoted positive user-generated visual and text-based content on Instagram and promoted positive interactions among Black and diverse communities. With the popularity of social media and hashtag use increasing, researchers and future interventional research should investigate the potential for such imagery to serve as culturally relevant design components for digital mental health prevention efforts geared towards Black men and the communities they exist and engage with.
... Research indicates that low self-esteem has been linked to unrealistic standards for self-evaluation [46] and that negative self-evaluations can occur when discrepancy increases between ideal and real self-image [47]. In the context of social media, for example, exposure to 'fitspiration' content, which tends to involve images and messages praising thinness and high fitness levels [48,49], can lead to increased body dissatisfaction if these ideals are internalized and unattained [39] Cognitive reframing mentioned by youths, such as setting realistic body image or achievement expectations, can therefore act as a buffer against the development of negative self-evaluations when comparing with unrealistic and unattainable body images or others' achievements on these platforms. ...
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Purpose This study aimed to expand and inform the emerging body of research on the negative experiences of social media use among youths and how youths deal with them, in an Asian setting, using a qualitative approach. Methods Data were collected using 11 focus group discussions (FGDs) and 25 semi-structured interviews (SIs) among youths aged 15 to 24 years residing in Singapore who were recruited via purposive sampling. Data were analysed using thematic analysis. Results The salient negative effects mentioned by participants include the development of negative reactions and feelings from upward comparisons with others (e.g., others’ achievements and lifestyle), receiving hurtful comments, exposure to controversial content (e.g., political events and social movements), as well as the perpetuation of negative feelings, behaviours, and sentiments (e.g., rumination, unhealthy eating behaviour, and self-harm). Participants also described strategies which they have employed or deemed to be useful in mitigating the negative effects of social media use. These include filtering content and users, taking breaks from social media, cognitive reframing, and self-affirmation, where they identify and change stress-inducing patterns of thinking by setting realistic social, physical, and lifestyle expectations for themselves, and focusing on self-development. Conclusion The current results highlight that while youths experience negative effects of social media use, they have high media literacy and have employed strategies that appear to mitigate the negative effects of social media use. The findings can inform various stakeholders involved in helping youths navigate the harms of social media use or provide directions for intervention studies aimed at reducing the harms of social media use.
... This appears to support our third explanation: that body ideals are dominantly influenced by sociocultural factors such as media. This likely includes media produced by corporations that portray the ideal body as both slim and muscularly toned, but also peer-generated social media, in which users (peers and influencers) present the best versions of themselves -versions of themselves aligned with existing body ideals -through platforms such as Instagram and TikTok (Carrotte et al., 2017;Ghaznavi & Taylor, 2015;C. V. Talbot et al., 2017). ...
Article
Objective: The present study sought to examine self-ratings of actual and ideal bodies, as well as attractiveness ratings of other bodies in an Australian undergraduate sample. Additionally, associations between body preferences and self-body ratings in men and women were explored. Method: Five-hundred-and-seventy heterosexual men and women selected their actual and ideal body, and the body they found most attractive utilizing bi-dimensional figural rating scales. Results: Results showed that on average both men and women wanted to have less body fat and more muscularity than they perceived that they had. Additionally, results showed that women’s body fat ideals are thinner than men prefer, but their ideal muscularity was congruent with what men selected as most attractive. Men, however, showed exaggerated thinness and muscularity compared to female preferences. Results also showed small to moderate positive correlations between both men and women’s perceived actual body, and the body they found most attractive in a different gender for body fat and muscularity, respectively. Conclusions: These results add to the evidence of discrepancy between perceived actual and ideal bodies for men and women, and ideal bodies and what is attractive to others. Additionally, results highlight the significance of perceived body characteristics in influencing attraction.
... Similarly, content analyses of so-called fitspiration or fitspo posts, aimed at inspiring viewers to exercise, on various social media have found sexualized images of men, albeit less often than sexualized images of women. For example, in a study of 1,000 fitspiration posts (no race/ethnicity information reported) on Instagram, Deighton-Smith and Bell (2018) found that 9% of posts depicted men in sexualized clothing (compared to 16% of such posts of women) and 11% of posts showed men in no visible clothing (compared to 2% of such posts of women) (see also Carrotte et al., 2017;Murashka et al., 2020;Tiggemann & Zaccardo, 2018). Together, these findings demonstrate that sexualized images of boys and men on social media are fairly common. ...
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Very little is known about viewers’ attitudes toward sexualized portrayals of men on social media platforms. Using an experimental methodology, the present study investigated the effect of a sexualized versus non-sexualized Tinder profile of a young White man on college students’ perceptions of the profile owner. The impact of multiple aspects of sexualization including a self-sexualizing self-description on one’s profile (i.e., interested in casual sex) as well as a sexualizing appearance (i.e., muscular and shirtless) were investigated. U.S. college students (N = 567) viewed a mock Tinder profile and then rated the target’s competence, social appeal, physical attractiveness, and likelihood of engaging in risky sexual behavior. Findings indicate a young White man with a sexualized self-presentation on a dating app may be perceived as less competent and as a sexual risk-taker. These results contribute to the small body of research documenting the impact of self-sexualization on a dating app profile.
... Such content also encourages viewers to engage in specific health-related practices and body work to 'become healthy' . Regular exercise, healthy eating, and detox diets are dominant leitmotifs (Carrotte et al., 2017). Recent work (Baker & Rojek, 2020) has argued that YouTubers devoted to the lifestyle category are evolving to become key agents of new forms of lay knowledge regarding health, even though this knowledge is neither scientific-based, nor produced by health experts. ...
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Professional YouTubers have become highly popular in producing video content through self-mediation. Objective. The present article aimed to study ways in which lifestyle YouTubers construct health practices in their videos within the YouTube media culture. Design. We conducted a narrative and visual analysis across a selection of 15 videos. Results. Results showed that YouTubers’ practices and recommendations for a better life were structured around three themes: Eating to live well; Exercising to live well; Resting to live well and, a fourth cross-cutting theme on Practices aimed at self-development to achieve health and happiness. YouTubers were mainly female presenting, as well as middle/upper-class and white appearing. An overall optimistic tone characterised their health stories, as they delivered personal experiences of success on becoming healthy, happy, and better persons, while encouraging viewers to act similarly. Our findings suggested that YouTubers actively contribute to construct unprecedented definitions of health, enhanced by the social media culture and broader societal logics of healthism and postfeminism. Conclusion. Our study constitutes an original contribution to critical health psychology by examining some of the paradoxes raised by social media influencers like YouTubers regarding health and wellbeing.
... The widespread use of online platforms (including the creation and sharing of self-focused visual content on social media) seems to provide a new and highly accessible medium for men and women to socialize through experiences of social pressure and selfobjectification (Bell et al, 2018;Cohen et al., 2018;Fardouly et al., 2018;Manago et al., 2015). Indeed, objectification cues in the media direct the viewers' attention to a strategic pose, emphasizing visual presentation, emphasizing close-ups of a particular body part, emphasizing externally perceptible features such as body appearance and sexualizing bodies (Boursier & Gioia, 2022;Carrotte et al., 2017;Tiggemann & Zaccardo, 2018). Moreover, social media use is of particular interest because of the known influence of peers on social comparison. ...
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In this study, it is aimed to comparatively examine the social media usage habits and social media awareness levels related to appearance of the students studying at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Turkey. The study was conducted in accordance with comparative relational screening and correlational research designs. 203 students studying in the fine arts faculties of four different universities participated in the study. According to the research findings, it has been observed that a large proportion of the participants use 'Social networking sites (Facebook, Instagram, Myspace, Google plus, etc.)' and 'Photo sharing sites (Instagram, Flickr, etc.)'. However, the social media awareness levels of the participants studying at the Faculties of Fine Arts were found to be low. While the social media awareness levels of the participants about appearance did not differ according to gender, class and achievement status, significant differences were found according to the departments. Finally, a significant relationship was found between the social media awareness levels of the students of the Faculty of Fine Arts and the frequency of use of social media platforms.
... Male participants in the qualitative study by Easton et al [18] revealed negative impacts similar to those experienced by women, a pattern further indicated by a recent cross-sectional survey by DiBisceglie et al [62]. Moreover, a recent study identified that men were featured and objectified in health and fitness content on social media almost as often as women [65]. Further research is needed to clarify whether a meaningful gender-based difference exists in the way that web-based health-focused content is consumed. ...
Article
Background Globally, suboptimal dietary choices are a leading cause of noncommunicable diseases. Evidence for effective interventions to address these behaviors, particularly in young adults, is limited. Given the substantial time young adults spend in using social media, there is interest in understanding the current and potential role of these platforms in shaping dietary behavior. Objective This study aims to explore the influence of social media on young adults’ dietary behaviors. Methods We recruited 234 young adults aged 18-24 years and living in Australia, using market and social research panels. We applied a digital ethnography approach to collect data from web-based conversations in a series of forums, where participants responded to different health-themed questions related to health behavior change and persuasion on social media. We conducted a qualitative thematic analysis. Results Participants described how social media influenced their decisions to change their health behaviors. Access to social support and health information through web-based communities was juxtaposed with exposure to highly persuasive fast-food advertisements. Some participants expressed that exposure to web-based health-focused content induced feelings of guilt about their behavior, which was more prominent among women. Fast-food advertisements were discussed as a contributor to poor health behaviors and indicated as a major barrier to change. Conclusions Young adults reported that social media is highly persuasive toward dietary behavior through different pathways of social influence. This suggests that social norms on the web are an important aspect of changing young adults’ health behaviors. The commercialization of social media also encourages poor health behaviors, largely through fast-food advertisements. Future social media–delivered dietary interventions should acknowledge the social and environmental factors that challenge the ability of young adults to make individual health behavior improvements. Care should also be taken to ensure that future interventions do not further elicit guilt in a way that contributes to poor mental health within this community.
... This process is called self-objectification and involves the regular monitoring and assessing one's looks-or body surveillance-and negative emotions regarding the perceived failure to achieve beauty standards-or body shame (McKinley & Hyde, 1996). In the context of SNS, individuals are often objectified (Carrotte et al., 2017), and the time spent on these websites is a risk factor for self-objectification and body dissatisfaction (Fardouly et al., , 2018Fox & Rooney, 2015;Hanna et al., 2017). Specifically, Fardouly (2018) proved that beauty-ideal internalization and appearance comparisons mediate the relationship between Instagram usage and selfobjectification. ...
Article
Since social networks have become an essential part of young people’s lives, the present study examined the relationship between sharing and manipulating selfies on Instagram and related outcomes on body image. A total of 350 young adults from Italy and Portugal participated in the study. They completed measures on selfie-sharing, selfie-manipulation, appearance-based comparison, internalization of beauty ideals, and shame for their bodies. Gender, nationality, and type of account (public/private) were hypothesized to moderate the examined relationships. The results partially confirmed the hypothesized model, indicating that sharing selfies was positively associated with body shame through appearance-based comparison, which was also positively associated with beauty-ideal internalization. In contrast with the hypotheses, selfie manipulation was negatively associated with body shame. Gender and type of social networks account moderated these relationships, whereas no moderation role was found with regard to nationality. Findings showed that there are specific behaviors on Instagram associated with the feeling of shame about one’s own body. Limitations of the present study and implications for future research are discussed from a sociocultural perspective.
... While fitspiration promotes health and fitness, it tends to primarily emphasize bodily appearance. Users post photos of their lightly dressed bodies, or view those of other people's bodies, the majority of which have tended to be female (Carrotte, Prichard, and Lim 2017;Tiggemann and Zaccardo 2018). Posts usually link conspicuously to fitness through caption conventions, hashtags, and representative attire, but tend to feature suggestively posed bodies, accentuating various physical features rather than actually 'performing' fitness. ...
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Though the rise of social media has provided countless advantages and possibilities, both within and without the domain of sports, recent years have also seen some more detrimental aspects of these technologies come to light. In particular, the widespread social media culture surrounding fitness – ‘fitspiration’ – warrants attention for the way it encourages self-sexualization and -objectification, thereby epitomizing a wider issue with photo-based social media in general. Though the negative impact of fitspiration has been well documented, what is less understood are the ways it potentially impacts and molds moral psychology, and how these same aspects may come to influence digital sports subcultures more broadly. In this theoretical paper, I rely on the insights of Friedrich Nietzsche to analyze the moral significance of a culture like fitspiration becoming normalized and influential in structuring and informing self-understanding, notions of value, and how to flourish in life. Using two doctrines central to Nietzsche’s philosophy—The Last Man and his conception of the ’higher self’ – I argue that fitspiration involves a form of hedonism that is potentially harmful to the pursuit and achievement of human flourishing. Through fitspiration, desire is elevated to a central moral principle, underlying the way users both consume and produce its content, catering simultaneously to their desires for external validation and instant gratification. It thereby creates conditions which foster a culture in adherence to the ethos of The Last Man. In doing so, I argue it impedes the cultivation of the virtues and higher values which define the higher individual, regarded by Nietzsche as essential for human flourishing. However, drawing on the ethical framework of the higher individual provides the philosophical and psychological resources with which resisting and overcoming the more harmful temptations of these trends may be possible.
... The respondents were asked to rate their feelings toward their four body parts, namely, stomach, hips, buttocks, and thighs, by using a 5-point Likert scale where 1 refers to "strongly satisfied" and 5 refers to "strongly dissatisfied." The four parts were included as they are highlighted in Fitspiration images (Carrotte et al., 2017). These four items demonstrate an acceptable level of reliability (α =0.845). ...
Article
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Exposure to Instagram Fitspiration images creates negative perceptions toward one’s body. Drawing on third-person effect (TPE) theory, this study aims to explain such feelings among viewers and examine the effect of appearance self-schema as an underlying cause of negative body image and the perceived impact of Fitspiration images on the self and others. A total of 301 university students who were viewers of Fitspiration images were recruited to complete a survey on demographic characteristics, body image, appearance self-schema, and the perceived impact of Fitspiration images on the self and others. Results show that the perceived effect of Fitspiration is greater on others than on the self. Appearance self-schema and the perceived impact of the media on others are negatively correlated with body image. Moreover, appearance self-schema positively counts for the perceived impact of Fitspiration images on the self and others. The robustness of TPE theory was confirmed in the context of Fitspiration images. Theoretically, TPE theory was expanded by introducing appearance self-schema as a predictor of first- and third-person perceptions. Some practical recommendations were made for young viewers and educationalists about the physical and mental health education related to the findings of this study.
... Indeed, content analyses showed that tspiration images, albeit focused on tness and health, foster weight loss and place particular value on physical appearance, depicting only thin and toned models [23]. ...
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An emerging body of research has evidenced the negative influence of using and being exposed to social networking sites (SNSs) on body image. Furthermore, it has been postulated that SNS use might be related with onset and persistence of eating disorders (EDs) psychopathology. The aim of the present study is to evaluate the complex interplay between Problematic Instagram use (PIU) (conceptualized as a potential behavioral addiction comprising withdrawal, conflict, tolerance, salience, mood modification and relapse) and ED psychopathology, by means of an explanatory Structural Equation Model. We hypothesized that PIU would be associated with ED symptoms through the mediating role of appearance comparison, individual psychological investment in physical appearance, and body uneasiness. A sample of 386 young female participants (M age = 26.04 ± 6.73) was recruited, of which 152 had received a diagnosis of ED. ED patients used Instagram more than the control group and showed higher levels of PIU. Results from structural equation modeling (fit indices: χ ² = 44.54, df = 19, p < .001; RMSEA = .059; CFI = .98; SRMR = .02) showed that PIU predicted appearance comparison and psychological investment in physical appearance, which in turn predicted body uneasiness. In turn, body uneasiness predicted ED psychopathology and interpersonal difficulties. Our model provides a useful account of how eating disorder symptoms could be triggered and maintained by an addictive use of Instagram.
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As healthcare shifts towards the digital realm and healthcare delivery steers to patient-centric solutions, new privacy risks emerge. Such risks are acknowledged, but understanding and addressing them with privacy-enhanced technologies is practically challenging. This chapter describes privacy concerns and risks that emerge with the digitization of healthcare services, the availability of Internet-of-care-things, and the usage of online services for medical data. To ensure patients’ privacy, collaborative efforts from stakeholders are necessary. Patients, practitioners, and family members play an important role, along with medical organizations, including hospitals, insurance companies, and clinics. Privacy-preserving mechanisms go beyond the protection of patients’ data to the infrastructure of medical devices, networks, and systems. The data life cycle, from collection to disposal, must be considered when implementing privacy protections. Principles, policies, and regulations addressing privacy are limited and costly to implement, failing to cover novel technologies that collect and transmit medical data. In the USA, HIPAA is the de facto policy standard. Nevertheless, HIPAA disregards data collected by wearable sensors, fitness trackers, and smartwatches. It does not consider social media networks, mobile applications, and discussion forums where users share medical information. Lastly, genetic data available through online profiles rises privacy issues that are neither known nor regulated.
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This chapter addresses how we develop, revisit, and negotiate norms around privacy when confronted with new technologies. The chapter first examines Nissenbaum’s (Washington Law Review 79(1):119–157, 2004) theory of privacy as contextual integrity, a framework that helps unpack how context-relevant norms for appropriateness and transmission can be challenged by new technologies. It then reviews how social norms develop as we build mental models of how a technology works during its diffusion process. The chapter concludes with suggestions for designers about approaches for thinking through implications when a design may challenge a preexisting social norm, or where there is no socially agreed upon norm. This includes careful reflection on who challenges to the current social norms may benefit and who they may hurt.
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Vulnerable populations face unique privacy risks that not only challenge designers’ preconceptions about privacy, these challenges are also frequently overlooked in decisions about privacy design and policy. This chapter defines and describes vulnerable populations and the challenges they face, as well as the research approaches that have traditionally been used to understand and design technologies that respect the privacy needs of vulnerable people. It describes how existing frameworks fail to account for the privacy concerns of people who experience heightened risk. It then introduces alternative ways of thinking about privacy that can help technologists, researchers, policy makers, and designers do a better job of serving the needs of the most vulnerable users of technology. We conclude with concrete guidance around identifying and integrating vulnerable populations into technology design for privacy.
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With the popularity of social media, researchers and designers must consider a wide variety of privacy concerns while optimizing for meaningful social interactions and connection. While much of the privacy literature has focused on information disclosures, the interpersonal dynamics associated with being on social media make it important for us to look beyond informational privacy concerns to view privacy as a form of interpersonal boundary regulation. In other words, attaining the right level of privacy on social media is a process of negotiating how much, how little, or when we desire to interact with others, as well as the types of information we choose to share with them or allow them to share about us. We propose a framework for how researchers and practitioners can think about privacy as a form of interpersonal boundary regulation on social media by introducing five boundary types (i.e., relational, network, territorial, disclosure, and interactional) social media users manage. We conclude by providing tools for assessing privacy concerns in social media, as well as noting several challenges that must be overcome to help people to engage more fully and stay on social media.
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Nowadays, people and enterprises put effort in protecting systems and applications that handle personal data and also in protecting digital footprints, and they realize that the concept of privacy protection is continuously evolving, depending on each environment. Admittedly, there is a plethora of digital products or services that necessitates the provision of personal data. The GDPR came into effect to establish a more concrete framework for the protection of EU citizens’ personal data. The impact of this regulation goes beyond the boundaries of EU in two ways. Firstly, the GDPR acts as a facilitator of non-EU enterprises that wish to do business and interact with EU citizens. Secondly, the GDPR, due to its wide applicability and generality, can be used as a basis and inspiration for other countries to establish their own data protection regulations and legal frameworks. This chapter consists of guidance for organizations to be able to reach compliance with the GDPR, regarding the protection of the personal information they process. Also, this chapter presents the impact that the GDPR has brought to the global landscape, because of its wide territorial scope and the expanded approach of the various definitions of data protection concepts being used.
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An increasing amount of sensitive information is being communicated and stored online. Frequent reports of data breaches and sensitive data disclosures underscore the need for effective technologies that users and administrators can deploy to protect sensitive data. Privacy-enhancing technologies can control access to sensitive information to prevent or limit privacy violations. This chapter focuses on some of the technologies that prevent unauthorized access to sensitive information. These technologies include secure messaging, secure email, HTTPS, two-factor authentication, and anonymous communication. Usability is an essential component of a security evaluation because human error or unwarranted inconvenience can render the strongest security guarantees meaningless. Quantitative and qualitative studies from the usable security research community evaluate privacy-enhancing technologies from a socio-technical viewpoint and provide insights for future efforts to design and develop practical techniques to safeguard privacy. This chapter discusses the primary privacy-enhancing technologies that the usable security research community has analyzed and identifies issues, recommendations, and future research directions.
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This chapter studies the relationship between two important, often conflicting paradigms of online services: personalization and tracking. The chapter initially focuses on the categories and levels of online personalization, briefly overviewing algorithmic methods applied to achieve these. Then, the chapter turns to online tracking specific to mobile and web technologies, as well as the more advanced behavioral tracking. Following this, the chapter ties the streams of personalization and tracking together and discusses various aspects of their relationships, including the currently deployed tracking methods for personalization. Privacy implications of personalization via online tracking, highlighted by organizations and researchers, are also illustrated. Lastly, this chapter discusses the ways to balance personalization benefits and privacy concerns. This includes the state-of-the-art practices, current challenges, and practical recommendations for system developers willing to strike this balance.
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Using networks of Internet-connected sensors, the Internet of Things (IoT) makes technologies “smart” by enabling automation, personalization, and remote control. At the same time, IoT technologies introduce challenging privacy issues that may frustrate their widespread adoption. This chapter addresses the privacy challenges of IoT technologies from a user-centered perspective and demonstrates these prevalent issues in the domains of wearables (e.g., fitness trackers), household technologies (e.g., smart voice assistants), and devices that exist in the public domain (e.g., security cameras). The chapter ends with a comprehensive list of solutions and guidelines that can help researchers and practitioners introduce usable privacy to the domain of IoT.
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Imagine that you are a product manager at a software company. When users disclose some information to your product, they can use all the great features you and your team have integrated into the software. Utilizing these features is essential for the success of your product: it makes users satisfied and encourages others to use the software as well. Furthermore, the user and usage data can be used to improve the product and help implementing new features over time. However, since your product collects users’ data, you are worried about privacy-related issues. What causes users’ privacy concerns, and what are the potential consequences of those concerns? The APCO ( A ntecedents → P rivacy C oncerns → O utcomes) and enhanced APCO models provide a summary of the current scientific findings related to these questions and present them in a conceptual model. The APCO framework will help practitioners and scholars to bring different privacy-related aspects of a product to their attention and suggests how these aspects can interrelate. Throughout this chapter, we will consider a use case scenario of a fitness tracker application and discuss how APCO applies to this scenario.
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There are diverse streams of empirical research attempting to study complex privacy behaviors in different scenarios. In this chapter, we connect those streams and present them under three themes: (1) individuals’ uncertainty about their own preferences as well as their uncertainty about the consequences of information disclosure; (2) the context-dependence of individuals’ concern, or lack thereof, about privacy; (3) the degree to which privacy concerns are malleable and prone to manipulations by commercial and government entities. Building on these themes, we discuss the role of public policy in the protection of privacy in the information age.
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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 operates beyond the individual level. The chapter describes several contemporary practices that influence the privacy of multiple actors and considers the dynamics of multi-stakeholder privacy decision-making. Potential tensions that exist between the rights and preferences of individual group members or between individuals and the group as a whole are also examined. Finally, recommendations for tools and other mechanisms to support collaborative privacy management and group privacy protection are provided.
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This chapter introduces the book Modern Socio-Technical Perspectives on Privacy . The book informs academic researchers and industry professionals about the socio-technical privacy challenges related to modern networked technologies. This chapter provides a working definition of privacy, describes the envisioned audiences of this book, and summarizes the key aspects covered in each chapter. The chapter concludes with an invitation to join our community of privacy researchers and practitioners at modern-privacy.org .
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End-user privacy mechanisms have proliferated in various types of devices and application domains. However, these mechanisms were often designed without adequately considering a wide range of underserved users, for instance, people with disabilities. In this chapter, we focus on the intersection of accessibility and privacy, paying particular attention to the privacy needs and challenges of people with disabilities. The key takeaway messages of this chapter are as follows: (1) people with disabilities face heightened challenges in managing their privacy; (2) existing end-user privacy tools are often inaccessible to people with disabilities, making them more vulnerable to privacy threats; and (3) design guidelines are needed for creating more accessible privacy tools.
Article
L'utilizzo massiccio di social-network basati sull'immagine modifica le tradizionali fonti di feedback per il proprio aspetto fisico. Esplorando il ruolo del digitale nella costruzione dell'immagine di Sé, in questo studio abbiamo esaminato la relazione tra il processo di osservazione di immagini modificate su Instagram, l'autostima e il dimorfismo corporeo. Misure self-report sono state somministrate a 327 adolescenti e giovani adulti. I risultati dello studio indicano che sia il processo di osservazione di immagini modificate che la manipolazione della propria immagine aumentano i sintomi dismorfici. I risultati suggeriscono, dunque, che l'essere costantemente esposti a fotografie manipolate può configurarsi come una nuova area di rischio per lo sviluppo identitario di adolescenti e giovani adulti.
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This chapter introduces relevant privacy frameworks from academic literature that can be useful to practitioners and researchers who want to better understand privacy and how to apply it in their own contexts. We retrace the history of how networked privacy research first began by focusing on privacy as information disclosure. Privacy frameworks have since evolved into conceptualizing privacy as a process of interpersonal boundary regulation, appropriate information flows, design-based frameworks, and, finally, user-centered privacy that accounts for individual differences. These frameworks can be used to identify privacy needs and violations, as well as inform design. This chapter provides actionable guidelines for how these different frameworks can be applied in research, design, and product development.
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Objectives Recent behavioral research indicates that social media may be successfully integrated into weight loss interventions to mitigate the obesity epidemic that has been linked with type two diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, cancers, as well as poor psychological health. This study aimed to examine the content and characteristics of 100 most trending TikTok videos related to weight loss. Study design This was a cross-sectional, descriptive study. Methods Videos were analyzed for source, predominant theme, and inclusion of specific content. Independent two-tailed t-tests assessed the effect of content on number of comments, likes, and forwards garnered by the videos. Results More than 90% of the videos were consumer generated, indicating a missed opportunity by health professionals to use social media to provide accurate information regarding weight loss. Less than one-fifth of the videos were informational but significantly influenced the number of comments (P < .001) and likes (P = .002). Videos mentioning benefits ((P < .001) and speed of weight loss (P = .003) significantly influenced the number of forwards, whereas those that mentioned recipes (P = .005) and how to lose weight (P = .003) significantly affected the number of comments. Conclusion The results underscore the need for further research to elucidate the effectiveness of social media in impacting weight loss, as well as how they may supplement traditional health promotion and behavior interventions for weight loss.
Article
Social media use has often been linked to adolescents' body dissatisfaction, but longitudinal investigations of this relation are scarce. This three-wave panel study among N = 1032 adolescents contributes to the existing literature by testing the within-person relations between different interactions with appearance-focused social media content (i.e., exposure, liking, positively commenting and posting) and adolescents' body dissatisfaction, measured with a current versus ideal size discrepancy figure rating scale. The results of random-intercept cross lagged panel models showed that increased posting of appearance-focused content predicted decreased body dissatisfaction four months later. Yet, this finding was not consistent across both time intervals. In addition, increased exposure predicted decreased body dissatisfaction, yet only among boys. Liking and positively commenting did not predict adolescents' body dissatisfaction over time. These results indicate a self-affirming role of posting self-related appearance content and highlight boys’ positive agency over their social media use and body image.
Article
Understanding the mechanisms through which internalisation of societal body standards lead to negative outcomes for women is important to inform prevention and treatment strategies targeting female body image issues and problematic eating and exercise behaviours. This study investigated the mediating roles of body surveillance and social comparison on the relationship between fit-ideal internalisation and a range of negative eating and body image related outcomes. Participants were 448 females, aged 16–25 years who completed self-report measures of fit-ideal internalisation, body surveillance, social comparison, body dissatisfaction, dieting, bulimic behaviours and compulsive exercise. Consistent with hypotheses, the results of parallel mediation analyses suggested that both body surveillance and social comparison mediated the relationship between fit-ideal internalisation and body dissatisfaction, dieting and bulimic behaviours. However, only social comparison was found to mediate the relationship between fit-ideal internalisation and compulsive exercise. The results suggest both body surveillance and social comparison are mechanisms by which fit internalisation detriments women's body image, making them potentially useful treatment targets for future research.
Article
Fitspiration is a popular social media trend that aims to inspire individuals to improve their health and fitness through diet and exercise. However, viewing fitspiration content on Instagram has been identified as a contributor to negative body image, especially for young women. With the growing popularity of the video sharing platform TikTok and concerns over its content, the present study aimed to experimentally examine the effect of exposure to fitspiration TikTok videos on young women's body dissatisfaction, appearance comparison and mood. The roles of state appearance comparison as a mediator and trait fit ideal internalisation as a moderator were also considered. Young women (18-25, N = 120) from Australia were randomly allocated to view a set of fitspiration videos or a set of art control videos from TikTok. Results indicated that exposure to fitspiration TikTok videos increased state appearance comparison and state negative mood relative to art TikTok videos but did not directly increase state body dissatisfaction. State appearance comparison significantly mediated the effect of TikTok videos on body dissatisfaction and mood, however, there was no moderating effect of trait fit ideal internalisation. These findings highlight the importance of state appearance comparison in relation to viewing fitspiration content on TikTok.
Thesis
http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/174735/1/abavikat.pdf
Article
The presentation and performance of women's selfhood and identity in Pakistan, in both the real and the virtual world, is dictated and shaped by the male-dominated cultural mores of Pakistan. Therefore, drawing upon Goffman's notion of self-presentation and everyday performance of selfhood, this paper explores digitally active Pakistani women's selfhood and identity presentation through qualitative interviews with ten Pakistani women from diverse backgrounds. Participants’ narratives revealed identity conflicts between their offline and online identities due to the control exhibited by the prevalent cultural norms and values. Similarly, offline cultural mores of the veil seeping into the online world operate as a patriarchal means of controlling women online akin to the male-protected family and home as a sacred sanctuary providing security to the family women. Pakistani women's experience of the online world is also defined in terms of “digital veil” and “digital sanctuary”. Findings reveal that Pakistani women social media users’ offline self-presentation clashes with their performance of selfhood in their virtual lives. This divergence and resulting identity crisis of selfhood is shaped by cultural regulation which adversely affects Pakistani women's lives. Extended research on social and cyber culture in offline and online identity formation with respect to psychosocial implications is recommended.
Chapter
For teens today, the time they spend with digital technologies represents more than a 40-h work week. In light of the prominent role that technologies take in their lives, this chapter is a review of research on the role of digital technologies in shaping adolescents’ body image. Grounded in sociocultural and social comparison theories, we review evidence on social media, selfies, image retouching, fitspiration, and body-related online forums. We also highlight an important future direction in this research literature: the examination of how digital technologies shape and sustain positive body image. Also, in this review, we foreground the developmental considerations of the adolescent audience and the affordances of digital technologies, ultimately providing a conceptual map of the research by examining the intersections between developmental considerations and technological affordances.
Article
Eating healthily is widely understood as a key way for individuals to achieve and maintain good health, but how people make sense of what healthy eating involves is more complex. In a context characterised by shifts in authority around health and knowledge, and neoliberal and healthist discourses, we ask how the task of ‘eating healthily’ is made sense of in the everyday. We examined constructs around healthy eating in Aotearoa New Zealand, using 118 stories collected using the story completion method. Participants wrote stories in response to a story prompt about a person who was about to start eating healthily. Using a constructionist version of reflexive thematic analysis, we developed four key themes: healthy eating is constantly under threat; to separate fact from fiction; can you afford not to (eat healthily)?; and, healthy eating takes a particular type of person. These four themes told an overarching story of the impossible rightness of healthy eating – healthy eating was simultaneously what one should do, but difficult, if not impossible, to do. This novel method generated a nuanced understanding of some of the representational or sociocultural tensions that may limit engagement with healthy eating.
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This literature review aims to examine the negative and positive aspects of social media use, on body image, eating disorders (ED), and explore the possible mechanisms driving these relationships. The method of this review focuses on the qualitative interpretation and synthesis of the knowledge state of the knowledge in the literature selected for a defined topic. The key findings of this review are: (a) Social Media Use and Body Image: Thin-Ideal Internalization and Appearance Comparison (b) Impact of Social Media Use on eating behaviors (EB) and ED (c) Theoretical Perspectives on Body Image and ED (d) Relevance of Social Media Use, Body Image, and ED (e) The role of social media from a sustainable and positive perspective. The results identified the light and dark sides of social media use for body image and ED. The negative and positive effects of social media use on body image and ED are discussed.
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The present study examined the relationship between posting or viewing fitspiration and clean eating imagery in relation to body image, disordered eating, and compulsive exercise among women. Participants (269 women aged 18–30 years) who posted and/or viewed fitspiration, clean eating or travel imagery on Instagram completed an online cross-sectional questionnaire. Results showed engaging with fitspiration and clean eating material (either posting or viewing) was significantly positively associated with increased levels of compulsive exercise and athletic-ideal internalization. However, only viewing (not posting) fitspiration and clean eating content was significantly related to thin-ideal internalization and disordered eating symptomatology. Athletic-ideal internalization mediated the relationships between posting fitspiration/clean eating and disordered eating symptomatology and compulsive exercise. Both thin-ideal internalization and athletic-ideal internalization mediated the relationship between viewing fitspiration/clean eating material and disordered eating and compulsive exercise. Overall, the findings suggest that viewing fitspiration and clean eating content on Instagram is negatively associated with thin-ideal internalization and disordered eating symptomatology, however the same relationships do not exist for people who frequently post these types of material. The mediational pathways provide a nuanced understanding of how engaging with fitspiration and clean eating material on social media influences female users’ body image and health behaviour.
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The present study aimed to examine the tone and focus of the conversation associated with #childathlete on Instagram. Additionally, the visual content of five child athlete Instagram accounts were analyzed to determine if fitspiration (e.g., exercise, healthy eating, inspiration, showcase strength, and empowerment) or objectification (e.g., emphasis of specific body parts, suggestive posing, or emphasis on appearance) were promoted. Using Netlytic, a text analysis was conducted to analyze the conversation surrounding #childathlete and the top five child athlete accounts (based on likes) that were managed by parents were selected for visual content analysis. The text analysis revealed that the conversation was positive in tone and focused on sport/exercise. Analysis of the visual content indicated that the child athlete accounts focused athleticism, activity, and fitness, with little presence of objectification. Future research should further explore social media as a strategy for promoting and improving physical activity among users.
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In today's world, the digital environment has an influence on consumers' lives, in terms of attitudes, preferences, habits, likes and dislikes, and purchasing practices. It is also observed that throughout history, a variety of professionals have been utilized to influence the public. To the group of individuals who lead as celebrities, role models, or opinion leaders in the digital age, “influencers” have been added in. This chapter aims to examine the relationship between influencers and consumption. As a result of the research, it was revealed that most of the shares/posts had the name of a brand or product, tagged brand, or used related hashtags to direct followers to consumption. The findings also show that despite the use of a large number of brand names, a very small number of these posts have the emphasis of sponsorship, advertising, or cooperation. Finally, it was also found that despite the high number of followers, the interaction rate is very low.
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We interviewed a panel of 13 applied researchers to understand why applied and academic privacy researchers do not collaborate more often. While many agree about the benefits of collaboration, they simply do not collaborate due to real and perceived barriers, such as timelines, goal differences, and data-sharing difficulties. We synthesize the findings and provide actionable recommendations to help bridge the gap between academic and applied research.
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While previous studies have investigated online health communities and health-seeking behaviours, less attention has been directed at the growing impact of the online fitness movement. This paper draws on the concept of biopedagogies to examine the messages transmitted within fitness culture on social networking sites (SNSs), and their role as a channel for health and fitness information. To explore this, a multi-method approach was conducted. The two methods included a netnography (online ethnography) and 22 semi-structured individual interviews with female participants aged 18–24 in Australia. The study suggests that online fitness use is becoming a popular leisure activity and source of health and fitness information. It reveals how SNSs are used as a platform to gather and teach ideas of health and fitness, and the manner in which textual and photographic online communication facilitates the social construction and transmission of this knowledge. Results indicated that although fitness accounts on SNSs offer differing notions to present alternative and competing realities, users predominantly chose to follow the normalised and dominant health discourses. Noteworthy, the onus is firmly placed on the individual within these health and fitness messages to adhere to norms of correct health practices and choices. This has connotations relevant to eHealth literacy.
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Background: Adolescence and young adulthood are key periods for developing norms related to health behaviors and body image, and social media can influence these norms. Social media is saturated with content related to dieting, fitness, and health. Health and fitness–related social media content has received significant media attention for often containing objectifying and inaccurate health messages. Limited research has identified problematic features of such content, including stigmatizing language around weight, portraying guilt-related messages regarding food, and praising thinness. However, no research has identified who is “liking” or “following” (ie, consuming) such content. Objective: This exploratory study aimed to identify demographics, mental health, and substance use–related behaviors that predicted consuming 3 types of health and fitness–related social media content—weight loss/fitness motivation pages (ie, “fitspiration”), detox/cleanse pages, and diet/fitness plan pages—among young social media users. Methods: Participants (N=1001; age: median 21.06, IQR 17.64-24.64; female: 723/1001, 72.23%) completed a cross-sectional 112-question online survey aimed at social media users aged between 15-29 years residing in Victoria, Australia. Logistic regression was used to determine which characteristics predicted consuming the 3 types of health and fitness–related social media content. Results: A total of 378 (37.76%) participants reported consuming at least 1 of the 3 types of health and fitness–related social media content: 308 (30.77%) fitspiration pages, 145 (14.49%) detox pages, and 235 (23.48%) diet/fitness plan pages. Of the health and fitness–related social media content consumers, 85.7% (324/378) identified as female and 44.8% (324/723) of all female participants consumed at least 1 type of health and fitness–related social media content. Predictors of consuming at least one type of health and fitness–related social media content in univariable analysis included female gender (OR 3.5, 95% CI 2.5-4.9, P<.001), being aged 15-17 years (OR 3.0, 95% CI 2.2-4.0, P<.001), residing outside a major city (OR 2.0, 95% CI 1.4-2.9, P<.001), having no post–high school education (OR 2.2, 95% CI 1.7-2.9, P<.001), being born in Australia (OR 2.0, 95% CI 1.2-3.2, P=.006), having a self-reported eating disorder (OR 2.4, 95% CI 1.5-3.9, P<.001), being a victim of bullying (OR 1.7, CI 1.3-2.3, P<.001), misusing detox/laxative teas or diet pills (OR 4.6, 95% CI 2.8-7.6, P<.001), never using illegal drugs (OR 1.6, 95% CI 1.2-2.0, P=.001), and not engaging in risky single occasion drinking on a weekly basis (OR 2.0, 95% CI 1.3-3.0, P=.003). Conclusions: Consumers of health and fitness–related social media content were predominantly teenaged girls. There is a need to ensure that this social media content portrays responsible health messages and to research further the role of fitspiration pages, detox pages, and diet/fitness plan pages in influencing body image and health behaviors.
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Media research has found that brief exposure to idealized images can negatively affect men's body satisfaction. However, there has been little variation in the types of images previously used in research. This study aimed to test the predictions of body conceptualization theory by comparing the effects of idealized images that focus on aesthetic (body-as-object; BAO) or functional (body-as-process; BAP) dimensions. It was expected that BAO images would have greater negative effects than BAP or neutral images. Men (N = 125) were randomly assigned to view images representing BAP, BAO, or scenery. They completed pre- and multiple posttest measures of state mood and body satisfaction as well as trait measures of body image. The results showed that exposure to the BAP images resulted in lower levels of fitness and overall appearance satisfaction than the other conditions, with the differences in fitness satisfaction sustaining 5 min postexposure. Furthermore, of the trait measures, fitness orientation and drive for muscularity emerged as important predictors in the BAP condition. These results suggest that men may find images of male models engaged in sports more natural or desirable than posed models, which in turn elicits greater negative self-evaluations. In addition, investment in fitness may serve as a protective factor against negative media effects.
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The head-body ratios of more than 1400 profile pictures of seven different nations were analyzed to test differences in facial prominence in the profile photos posted on social networking sites. The social psychology theory of face-ism was used to measure the head-body ratio of men and women. Results show that men were significantly higher in facial prominence than women, suggesting social gender stereotypes are internalized cross-culturally by individuals and influence their choice of photographs. Nationality was found to play a role in the face-ism indexes, with some nations displaying more of a gap in indexes between genders than others. The study shows that gender stereotypes still exist across cultures despite the self-selection ability of users.
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This article offers objectification theory as a framework for understanding the experiential consequences of being female in a culture that sexually objectifies the female body. Objectification theory posits that girls and women are typically acculturated to internalize an observer's perspective as a primary view of their physical selves. This perspective on self can lead to habitual body monitoring, which, in turn, can increase women's opportunities for shame and anxiety, reduce opportunities for peak motivational states, and diminish awareness of internal bodily states. Accumulations of such experiences may help account for an array of mental health risks that disproportionately affect women: unipolar depression, sexual dysfunction, and eating disorders. Objectification theory also illuminates why changes in these mental health risks appear to occur in step with life-course changes in the female body.
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The kappa statistic is frequently used to test interrater reliability. The importance of rater reliability lies in the fact that it represents the extent to which the data collected in the study are correct representations of the variables measured. Measurement of the extent to which data collectors (raters) assign the same score to the same variable is called interrater reliability. While there have been a variety of methods to measure interrater reliability, traditionally it was measured as percent agreement, calculated as the number of agreement scores divided by the total number of scores. In 1960, Jacob Cohen critiqued use of percent agreement due to its inability to account for chance agreement. He introduced the Cohen's kappa, developed to account for the possibility that raters actually guess on at least some variables due to uncertainty. Like most correlation statistics, the kappa can range from -1 to +1. While the kappa is one of the most commonly used statistics to test interrater reliability, it has limitations. Judgments about what level of kappa should be acceptable for health research are questioned. Cohen's suggested interpretation may be too lenient for health related studies because it implies that a score as low as 0.41 might be acceptable. Kappa and percent agreement are compared, and levels for both kappa and percent agreement that should be demanded in healthcare studies are suggested.
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The present study examined body image and associated psychological traits in 154 college men. The comprehensive battery of measures included a novel computerized test of body image perception, the Somatomorphic Matrix, in which subjects could navigate through a range of body images, spanning a wide range of body fat and muscularity, to answer various questions posed by the computer. Subjects also completed paper-and-pencil instruments assessing depression, characteristics of eating disorders, self-esteem, and use of performance-enhancing substances. Findings suggest that contemporary American men display substantial body dissatisfaction and that this dissatisfaction is closely associated with depression, measures of eating pathology, use of performance-enhancing substances, and low self-esteem. Muscle belittlement, believing that one is less muscular than he is, presented as an important construct in the body dissatisfaction of men. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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This content analysis examined the depiction of women in 1,988 advertisements from 58 popular U.S. magazines. Advertisements were coded with respect to whether women were presented as sex objects and/or as victims using a scheme developed by the researchers. On average across magazines, one of two advertisements that featured women portrayed them as sex objects. Women appeared as victims in just under ten percent of the advertisements. Men’s, women’s fashion, and female adolescent magazines were more likely to portray women as sex objects and as victims than news and business, special interest, or women’s non-fashion magazines. The implications of viewing advertisements depicting women as sex objects and as victims, especially sexualized victims, are discussed.
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Perceived norms are related to health-related attitudes and behaviors, including body image. The current study examined body dissatisfaction and perceived norms for thinness and muscularity among male and female college students. Participants included 842 undergraduate students (64.5% female) who completed an online survey assessing body image and other health-related attitudes and behaviors. A series of independent sample and paired sample t tests were conducted to document sex differences in body dissatisfaction and misperceptions of thinness and muscularity norms. Based on pictorial ratings, both males and females reported discrepancies between their ideal and actual figures. Females perceived other females as significantly thinner and less muscular than the actual norms. Males perceived other males as significantly heavier than their own figures, but the difference between men's self-reported muscularity and perceived norm was not significant. Both males and females misperceived opposite-sex attractiveness norms for thinness and muscularity. Results suggest the importance of evaluating same-sex and opposite-sex perceived norms of thinness and muscularity in the etiology of body dissatisfaction, and this research informs social norms interventions targeting misperceptions of body image norms among both males and females.
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"Fitspiration" websites are media that aim to inspire people to live healthy and fit lifestyles through motivating images and text related to exercise and diet. Given the link between similar Internet content (i.e., healthy living blogs) and problematic messages, we hypothesized that content on these sites would over-emphasize appearance and promote problematic messages regarding exercise and diet. Keywords "fitspo" and "fitspiration" were entered into search engines. The first 10 images and text from 51 individual websites were rated on a variety of characteristics. Results indicated that a majority of messages found on fitspiration websites focused on appearance. Other common themes included content promoting exercise for appearance-motivated reasons and content promoting dietary restraint. "Fitspiration" websites are a source of messages that reinforce over-valuation of physical appearance, eating concerns, and excessive exercise. Further research is needed to examine the impact viewing such content has on participants' psychological health.
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‘Fitspiration’ is an online trend designed to inspire viewers towards a healthier lifestyle by promoting exercise and healthy food. This study provides a content analysis of fitspiration imagery on the social networking site Instagram. A set of 600 images were coded for body type, activity, objectification and textual elements. Results showed that the majority of images of women contained only one body type: thin and toned. In addition, most images contained objectifying elements. Accordingly, while fitspiration images may be inspirational for viewers, they also contain a number of elements likely to have negative effects on the viewer’s body image.
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Existing content analyses of pro-eating disorder web content have focused on thinness-oriented eating disorder pathology. With the increasing prevalence of muscularity-oriented body image concerns, we conducted a systematic content analysis of 421 active pro-muscularity websites including static content websites, blogs, and online forums. Emergent coding methods were utilized (Cohen's kappa range=.78-.88), and eight distinct thematic categories were identified: rigid dietary practices (26.2%), rigid exercise rules (18.4%), the broader benefits of muscularity (16.1%), the encouragement of the drive for size (15.9%), the labeling of non-ideal body (11.4%), marginalizing other areas of life (6.1%), muscle enhancing substances (3.3%), and minimizing medical risk (2.6%). Pro-muscularity websites provide explicit material surrounding potentially non-healthful muscularity-oriented eating and exercise practices. Clinician awareness of the potentially non-healthful behaviors involved in the pursuit of muscularity may enhance the detection and treatment of male eating disorders, in particular.
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This paper aims to reconstruct the cultural dialogue surrounding the female body image in aerobics. To do this I have used several methods: ethnographic fieldwork, interviews, and media analysis. I found that the media ideal is a contradiction: firm but shapely, fit but sexy, strong but thin. Likewise, women’s relationships with the media image are contradictory: They struggle to obtain the ideal body, but they also find their battles ridiculous. I interpret my findings from a Foucaultian perspective to show how the discourse surrounding the female body image is part of a complex use of power over women in postmodern consumer society. In addition, I assume a feminist perspective that assigns an active role to the individual aerobicizers to question the power arrangement.
Article
Fitspiration is an online trend designed to inspire viewers towards a healthier lifestyle by promoting exercise and healthy food. The present study aimed to experimentally investigate the impact of fitspiration images on women's body image. Participants were 130 female undergraduate students who were randomly assigned to view either a set of Instagram fitspiration images or a control set of travel images presented on an iPad. Results showed that acute exposure to fitspiration images led to increased negative mood and body dissatisfaction and decreased state appearance self-esteem relative to travel images. Importantly, regression analyses showed that the effects of image type were mediated by state appearance comparison. Thus it was concluded that fitspiration can have negative unintended consequences for body image. The results offer support to general sociocultural models of media effects on body image, and extend these to "new" media. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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Objective“Pro-ana” or Thinspiration websites are internet sites that support weight loss and eating disorders. Fitspiration websites are a newer type of site that supposedly advocates a fit and healthy lifestyle.Method The first 10 images from a sample of 50 Fitspiration and 50 Thinspiration websites, chosen using a standard internet search protocol, were rated on a variety of weight, eating, and appearance characteristics. χ2 analyses were conducted to compare website content.ResultsThinspiration sites featured more content related to losing weight or fat, praising thinness, showng a thin pose, and providing food guilt messages than Fitspiration sites. However, sites did not differ on guilt-inducing messages regarding weight or the body, fat/weight stigmatization, the presence of objectifying phrases, and dieting/restraint messages. Overall, 88% of Thinspiration sites and 80% of Fitspiration sites contained one or more of the coded variables.DiscussionPrior research has examined Thinspiration websites and noted the potentially hazardous messages contained on these sites. This content analysis indicates that sites supposedly devoted to healthy pursuits (fitness) may also contain thematically similar content. (Int J Eat Disord 2015)
Article
Much research has demonstrated negative impacts of idealized-body imagery exposure on body satisfaction. Yet, paradoxically, media with such imagery attract mass audiences. Few studies showed women's body satisfaction increased due to thin-ideal exposure. The kind of social comparison women engage in (self-evaluation vs. self-improvement) may explain these inconsistent findings and the paradoxical attraction to thin-ideal messages. Across 5 days, thin-ideal messages were presented to 51 women; self-evaluation and self-improvement social comparisons as well as body satisfaction were measured each day. A linear positive change in body satisfaction emerged. Greater self-improvement social comparisons increased this change, whereas greater self-evaluation social comparisons reduced it. Extent of both social comparison types changed during the prolonged exposure. A greater tendency to compare one's body with others' improved body satisfaction through self-improvement social comparisons and fostered weight-loss behaviors through self-evaluation social comparisons.
Article
This study examined images of male bodies in the popular magazines GQ, Rolling Stone, and Sports Illustrated, from 1967 to 1997. A sample of images was analyzed using an eight-point scale measuring levels of body fat and muscularity. Findings suggest that the male bodies featured in these magazines became more lean, muscular, and V-shaped (featuring a broad chest tapering to a narrow waist) over the years. Leanness and V-shape increased dramatically from the 1960s and 1970s to the 1980s, declining slightly in the 1990s. Muscularity increased progressively over the years, reaching its highest level in the 1990s.
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Using a new set of male figure drawings which(unlike the Stunkard, Sorensen, & Schulsinger, 1983figures) illustrate differing degrees of muscle massrather than body fat, college men and adult men selected their current figure, ideal figure,figure they thought most attractive to women and figurethat they thought would be the ideal for other men.Adult men's choices indicated satisfaction with their current bodies, but college men's selectionsindicated a desire to be larger (partly because theybelieve that a much larger body is what everybody {menand women} finds most attractive). The male body college women find most attractive is largerthan what college men indicate they currently have butsmaller than what the college men want to look like.Adult women chose an ideal male figure which is the same as that which the adult men indicate theyhave. Thus, selections using the new figure drawingsshow a desire for more muscle mass in college men andsatisfaction in adult men, while selections using the Stunkard et al. (1983) figuredrawings indicated satisfaction in college men and adesire for less body fat in the adult men (Rozin &Fallon, 1988). Both sets of figures provide valuableinformation.
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Objective: The study aimed to investigate different types of exercise, the role of exercise motivation and body image outcomes within the fitness centre environment. Design and method: Participants were 571 female fitness class participants recruited from fitness centres. They ranged in age from 18 to 71 years and participated in a variety of fitness activities both within and outside of the fitness centre environment. Reasons for exercise, self-objectification, body esteem, and disordered eating symptomatology were assessed using questionnaire measures. Results: Time spent exercising within the fitness centre environment was more highly related to body image and eating disturbance than time spent exercising outside of the fitness centre environment. Participation in cardio-based workouts (e.g., cardiovascular machines) was positively related to self-objectification, disordered eating behaviour, and appearance-related reasons for exercise, and negatively related to body esteem. In contrast, participation in yoga-based fitness classes was related to lower self-objectification and exercising more for health and fitness. Appearance-focused reasons for exercise were found to mediate the relationship between exercise types and self-objectification, disordered eating, and body esteem. Conclusion: The results show that the reasons women have for doing exercise provide a mechanism through which different types of exercise are associated with negative body image outcomes. Thus, despite the physical health-related benefits associated with regular physical activity, exercise motivated by appearance reasons (e.g., weight control) can lead to poorer body image in some women.
Article
The study aimed to investigate the role of social comparison processes in men's responses to images of muscular-ideal male beauty. A sample of 104 male university students viewed either 15 television commercials containing images of men who epitomize the current muscular ideal, or 15 nonappearance commercials containing no such images. Body satisfaction was assessed immediately before and after commercial viewing. Appearance evaluation and orientation were also examined as moderating variables. It was found that exposure to muscular-ideal television commercials led to lower muscle satisfaction and physical attractiveness than nonappearance commercials, with men high on appearance orientation the most vulnerable. Men high on appearance orientation also engaged in greater upward social comparison to muscular-ideal images which, in turn, predicted changes in body satisfaction. Taken together, the findings provide consistent evidence for a role for media images in men's body image. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Article
Conducted 5 studies on relative facial prominence in depictions of men and women. This hypothesized sex difference may be theoretically important because visual representations presumably contribute to generic conceptions of what is unique about each of the sexes. Three studies assessed the prevalence of "face-ism"—greater facial prominence in depictions of men—in 3 contexts: in American periodicals (1,750 published photographs in 5 magazines and newspapers were analyzed), in publications from 11 cultures (3,500 photographs and pictures were coded), and in artwork over 6 centuries (920 portraits and self-portraits were scored). A 4th study found experimental evidence that this difference also occurs in amateur drawings of men and women; Ss were 40 male and 40 female undergraduates. A final study varied facial prominence experimentally in photographs and found consequent changes in rated intelligence and other characteristics; Ss were 60 university students. Implications for sex differences, particularly for the perceived intellectual qualities of women, are discussed. (9 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Article
Modern ideals of female attractiveness include an extremely toned and fit appearance in addition to extreme thinness. Although viewing thin models has a negative effect on women's body image, research has not tested the effect of exposure to the ultra-fit physique separate from the thin-ideal. This randomized, posttest-only experiment tested the effects of the athletic aspect of the current ideal by exposing 138 undergraduate women to thin and athletic models, normal weight athletic models, or a control condition consisting of neutral objects. The study also tested the moderating effects of thin-ideal and athletic-ideal internalization. Exposure to thin ultra-fit models, but not normal weight ultra-fit models, produced an increase in body dissatisfaction and neither internalization variable moderated this effect. Findings suggest that interventions that focus on the benefits of fitness while challenging the desirability of thinness may offer promising results.
Article
Although internalization of the thin ideal has been extensively researched and is now regarded as a risk factor for eating disturbance, endorsement of the firm, athletic body ideal has received only minimal attention. This short-term longitudinal study explored whether internalization of two aspects of the current cultural ideal (thinness and athleticism) prospectively predicted three potentially deleterious outcomes: body dissatisfaction, dieting, and compulsive exercise. Undergraduate women (N=231) completed self-report measures at the beginning of the academic year and again 7 months later (N=156 at Time 2). Athletic-ideal internalization predicted change in compulsive exercise over the 7-month study period but not body dissatisfaction or dieting; thin-ideal internalization predicted change in all three outcomes. When both internalization measures were tested simultaneously, neither contributed unique variance. Results suggest that athletic-ideal internalization is not as detrimental as thin-ideal internalization.
'Strong is the new skinny': a content analysis of #fitspiration on Instagram
  • M Tiggemann
  • M Zaccardo
Images of inspiration? The effects of viewing different types of #Fitspo images on mood, body image and exercise behaviour
  • I Prichard
  • C Drummond
  • M Drummond
  • M Tiggemann
Prichard I, Drummond C, Drummond M, Tiggemann M. Images of inspiration? The effects of viewing different types of #Fitspo images on mood, body image and exercise behaviour. 2015 Presented at: Youth Health Conference; 2015; Melbourne, Australia.
The effects of exposure to images of the male muscular ideal on body image and muscularity concerns in men. Dissertation. Grand Forks: The University of North Dakota
  • J Mccray
McCray J. The effects of exposure to images of the male muscular ideal on body image and muscularity concerns in men. Dissertation. Grand Forks: The University of North Dakota; 2005:1-262.