FOMO-Centricity: How Social Media's Dark Designs Cause Users to Reluctantly Give Up their Data

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Westin, Fiona




This thesis explores the link between the Fear of Missing Out (FoMO) and reluctant privacy-compromising behaviours on social media. We first conducted a literature review which laid the groundwork for FoMO as a possible explanation for a gap between users' privacy attitudes and behaviours. To better understand this phenomenon, we used Grounded Theory to conduct and analyze semi-structured interviews with 25 participants. We found strong evidence that participants experience ambivalence in their participation behaviours and feel pressured to participate even when they have privacy concerns to avoid missing out. We present an empirically-based high level theory describing the cyclical relationship between \textit{FoMO-centric design} and privacy-related participatory reluctance, and identify three main participatory dimensions.


Computer Science




Carleton University

Thesis Degree Name: 

Master of Arts: 

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Thesis Degree Discipline: 

Human-Computer Interaction

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Theses and Dissertations

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