Positive or negative spirals of online behavior? Exploring reciprocal associations between being the actor and the recipient of prosocial and antisocial behavior online

Sara Erreygers*, Heidi Vandebosch, Ivana Vranjes, Elfi Baillien, Hans De Witte

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Bidirectional associations between being cyberbullied and cyberbullying others have been suggested, as well as bidirectional patterns of online prosocial behavior (reciprocity). However, so far, these relations have been studied as population-level associations, and it is not clear whether they also reflect within-person behavioral patterns. Therefore, this study aimed to disentangle between-person and within-person processes in online antisocial (cyberbullying) and prosocial behavior over time. Random intercept cross-lagged panel models were used to examine long-term within-person patterns of involvement in cyberbullying and online prosocial behavior. The findings showed no within-person effects between cyberbullying victimization and perpetration over time. In contrast, results did reveal significant within-person autoregressive effects of performing and receiving online prosocial behavior over time, and within-person cross-lagged effects between receiving online prosocial behavior and acting prosocially later on. These results indicate long-term positive, reinforcing spirals of prosocial exchanges, but no long-term negative spirals of cyberbullying perpetration and victimization.
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalNew Media & Society
Volume20
Issue number9
Pages (from-to)3437-3456
ISSN1461-4448
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed

Keywords

  • 512 Business and Management
  • cyberbullying
  • online behavior
  • prosocial behavior
  • random-intercept cross-lagged panel models
  • reciprocity

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