Type: Research Essays
Sample donated: Lynn Lawrence
Last updated: February 17, 2019
Nowadays,social media accounts of most people play an important role in selfpresentation as well as facilitating communication among people.Social media play a crucial role in young people’s socialization andidentity development, including gender identities.
Social media isoften used to show or raise self-esteem. In this way, young peopleare exposed to many gender stereotypes through social mediathroughout the day. Gender stereotypes have always existed and deeplyentrenched within all cultures. Stereotypes may provide advantages ordisadvantages, but it is important to keep them in balance.
Thegreatest advantage of stereotypes are to help to simplify complexlife experiences by categorizing. Theaim of this study was to investigate the extent to which visualgender stereotypes can be observed in selfies on Instagram.Additionally, the degree of gender stereotyping in selfies wascompare with gender stereotyping in magazine adverts, directly. Thehypotheses of the researchers were collected under three questions.The researchers use 500 selfies uploaded on Instagram. The percentageof selfies was dispersed as: 50% female and 50% male. The selfies wasselected randomly from instagram. For final hypothesis that theresearchers compared between with findings of a study on genderdepictions in magazine ads that also used Goffman’s and Kang’s genderdepiction categories and the frequencies found for selfies in thepresented study.
For the measurement of this study was used contentanalysis which included ten variables. The researchers indicated thatwomen’s selfies were more likely than the ads to reflect genderstereotypes in four ways: feminine touch, withdrawing gaze,imbalance, and loss of control. The results of the first researchquestion shows that statistically significant gender differences withsmall to medium effect sizes were found in selfies for all ofGoffman’s and Kang’s categories, however the sitting posture is notincluded this results. Feminine touch and imbalance were found thebiggest gender effects. The results of the second research questionshows that statistically significantly more selfies produced byfemales tend to take pictures with the kissing pout and facelessportrayal, meanwhile males’ selfies tend to more often displayedmuscle presentation. The kissing pout and muscle presentation werefound for the biggest gender differences. The results of the finalresearch question demonstrated that the biggest differences betweenselfies and magazine adverts appeared for the categories imbalanceand loss of control.
Theoreticalcriticisms Goffman(1979) has shown that the characters in the ads overlap with reallife in terms of gender roles. According to Goffman, Advertisingcharacters that match each other in real life also reinforce genderroles. The researchers used the Goffman’s five categories aboutconceptual framework of gender display in media.
In my opinion, thiscategories is not up-to-date because we know that the technology of1979 is not the same as the technology of this time. It is not rightto make a comparison between the two. At the same time, many thingsare very quickly forgotten, as many things are very quickly trending,today. In this study, the researchers prefered add “duck face”,because this is popular in recent time. Accordingto Bandura’s Social Learning Theory, people observer the others, andthen they imitiate their behaviors.
People generally tend to imitatesomebody who are similar to self. In this reason, they are tend toimitate behavior modeled by people who have same gender. If weobserve that behavior is rewarded or punished, our tendency toimitate this behavior is affected. If a people imitates a model’sbehavior in instagram and the results are rewarding, he/she cancontinue performing the behavior.
Additionally, a person learns byobserving the results of others behavior, again in instagram, if apose gain like, a person continue sit pose. The researchers mayconsider this view. Elaborationof methodological weaknesses or strengths Theresearchers selected the picture in instagram randomly. It’s myunderstanding that instagram users do not know that their photos areused for a study. I believe that users should be informed about thesituation, even if the photos are open to everyone.Theresearchers said that they used international hashtags, although theyinterested in english hashtags. For example, some people can prefertheir own language e.
g. #ben in turkish etc. Additionally, somecountries give a different name for daily using. For instance, selfiemeaning that “özçekim”.
Some people can use this type ofhashtags. The researchers do not reach all type of photos and theycan not generalize their results. Additionally, they may investigatethis study in other countries for cultural differences. Additioanally,the researchers can add some things.
First of all, the categoriesused can be extended because people forget some trends over time. For example, in recent time, new trend is body positive movement. Wecan see more normal and non-ideal body in instagram. Secondly, theresearchers used two sex in this study, they can extend gender types.Thirdly, they hypothesis included more female tendencies, they canadd more male tendencies. Thisstudy very important results for marketing and advertising. It is anadvantage to reach people who are in their sales targets.
TheoreticalImplications Theseresearches will guide the development of educational systems thatwill help young people build self esteem. The percentage of aged13-17 (teens) that use instagram daily is 52%. Furthurmore, 8 percentof the existing accounts consist of “fake accounts”.Especially in social media applications like Instagram, individualsare now clearly revealing their identities or creating new identitiesby easily here. Social media, photo sharing applications, especiallyinstagram and facebook, give people the opportunity to look like theywant.
It is very important that people accept themselves as they are.If they can not, they can face problems both cognitively andphysically. Preventing and helping them is the duty of mental healthworkers.