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A Social Cognitive Explanation of Internet Uses and Gratifications: Toward a New Theory of Media Attendance
Unformatted Document Text:  expectations were the only remaining significant predictor of Internet usage ( E = .350, t = 3.41, p < .001), producing a significant increase in the overall variance explained (Rsq change = .051, p < .001). After SCT variables were introduced a final prediction equation was obtained (F 6,160 = 19.386, p < .001, R = .649, corrected R 2 = .399 ) in which Internet self-efficacy ( E = .152, t = 2.16, p < .05), deficient self-regulation ( E = ..218, t = 3.02, p < .01), and habit strength ( E = .239, t = 3.23, p < .001) were significant predictors. DISCUSSION The present results both affirm and extend the prevailing paradigm of media attendance and exposure in communication studies, adding both to our understanding of the factors that predict Internet usage and our understanding of underlying theories of media attendance. A basic implication of Uses and gratifications, that media exposure may be predicted from media gratifications was again upheld. However, new variables and new operational definitions from SCT greatly improved -- and in the end subsumed -- the predictive power of media gratifications, here re-construed as outcome expectations. Using dimensions that paralleled those common to Uses and gratifications studies of the Internet, but changing the conceptual and operational focus from gratifications sought to outcomes expected, resulted in explaining nearly three times the variance in Internet usage previously reported (e.g., 9 percent for Papacharissi & Rubin, 2000, compared to 28 percent here). Expected activity outcomes, which closely parallel entertainment gratifications in Uses and gratifications research, and social outcomes/gratifications were significant predictors, much as they had been in prior research involving college students (e.g., Papacharissi & Rubin, 2000; LaRose et al., 2001; Kaye, 1998).

Authors: Eastin, Matthew. and Larose, Robert.
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expectations were the only remaining significant predictor of Internet usage (
E
= .350, t =
3.41, p < .001), producing a significant increase in the overall variance explained (Rsq
change = .051, p < .001). After SCT variables were introduced a final prediction equation
was obtained (F
6,160
= 19.386, p < .001, R = .649, corrected R
2
= .399 ) in which Internet
self-efficacy (
E
= .152, t = 2.16, p < .05), deficient self-regulation (
E
= ..218, t = 3.02, p <
.01), and habit strength (
E
= .239, t = 3.23, p < .001) were significant predictors.
DISCUSSION
The present results both affirm and extend the prevailing paradigm of media
attendance and exposure in communication studies, adding both to our understanding of
the factors that predict Internet usage and our understanding of underlying theories of
media attendance. A basic implication of Uses and gratifications, that media exposure
may be predicted from media gratifications was again upheld. However, new variables
and new operational definitions from SCT greatly improved -- and in the end subsumed --
the predictive power of media gratifications, here re-construed as outcome expectations.
Using dimensions that paralleled those common to Uses and gratifications studies
of the Internet, but changing the conceptual and operational focus from gratifications
sought to outcomes expected, resulted in explaining nearly three times the variance in
Internet usage previously reported (e.g., 9 percent for Papacharissi & Rubin, 2000,
compared to 28 percent here). Expected activity outcomes, which closely parallel
entertainment gratifications in Uses and gratifications research, and social
outcomes/gratifications were significant predictors, much as they had been in prior
research involving college students (e.g., Papacharissi & Rubin, 2000; LaRose et al.,
2001; Kaye, 1998).


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