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Social Media Activism in Response to the Influence of Political Parody Videos on YouTube

Social Media Activism in Response to the Influence of Political Parody Videos on YouTube

Abstract

Grounded in scholarship on both the perceptual and behavioral components of the third-person effect, the present experimental study examined the effects of perceived impact of political parody videos on self and on others, by varying the perceived intent of the video producer and perceived level of exposure. Building on previous research on the behavioral consequences of such presumed influence, we tested a hierarchical regression model to show how perceived influence on others predicted individuals’ willingness to engage in social media activism (i.e., corrective actions). Results demonstrated that participants in our study showed greater perceived influence of the political parody video when it was presented by a source of highly persuasive intent than by a source of low persuasive intent. Unlike our prediction for the effect of perceived exposure, we did not find the effect of perceived level of exposure on the presumed influence on others. Finally, the results of a hierarchical regression analysis showed that the perception of influence on others was positively associated with participants’ willingness to take a corrective action—the likelihood of engaging in political social media activism.
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