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Effects of Representational Similarity on Deindividuation and Conformity to Group Norms in Computer-Mediated Communication
Unformatted Document Text:  14 participant him- or herself. The results supported H2: when they all look alike on the computer screen, people tended to perceive their partners as more similar to themselves (M = 13.93) than when their appearance was distinct from one another (M = 12.47), F(1,56) = 4.28, p < .05, η 2 = .07. Surprisingly, however, people did not perceive their schoolmates to be any more similar to themselves than are students from other schools, F(1,56) = 1.99, p < .17, η 2 = .03. Although there was a slight tendency for people to attribute greater similarity to Partner 2 (M = 13.98, SD = 3.61) than to Partner 1 (M = 12.42, SD = 4.80), F(1,56) = 3.52, p < .07, η 2 = .06, no interaction involving this within-subject factor was significant, all Fs < .05. Three hypotheses were proposed with respect to conformity to group norms. H3 and H4 predicted a main effect for deindividuation (favoring the same-character condition) and group membership (favoring the same-university condition), respectively; H5 predicted an interaction between the two factors such that deindividuation effect would take different forms, either enhancing conformity (inter-group condition) or fostering social differentiation (interpersonal condition). The main effect for deindividuation was not statistically significant; nor was the effect for group membership, both Fs < 1. Thus, H 3 and H4 were not supported. Consistent with H5, however, the interaction was statistically significant, F(1,56) = 5.45, p < .05, η 2 = .09 (see Figure 2). Furthermore, when the interaction was decomposed (Winer, 1971), the pattern comported well with our predictions. More specifically, those in the inter-group condition displayed greater conformity to the same-charactered partners (M = -.44, SD = 1.56) than to the different-charactered counterparts (M = -1.53, SD = 1.56), t(56) = 2.58, p < .02. On the other hand, when they interacted with the same-university students, they exhibited less conformity to the same-charactered partners (M = -1.78, SD = 1.30) than to different-charactered counterparts (M = -.91, SD = 2.00), t(56) = 2.00, p = .05. INSERT FIGURE 2 ABOUT HERE

Authors: Lee, Eun-Ju.
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14
participant him- or herself. The results supported H2: when they all look alike on the computer
screen, people tended to perceive their partners as more similar to themselves (M = 13.93) than
when their appearance was distinct from one another (M = 12.47), F(1,56) = 4.28, p < .05,
η
2
=
.07. Surprisingly, however, people did not perceive their schoolmates to be any more similar to
themselves than are students from other schools, F(1,56) = 1.99, p < .17,
η
2
= .03. Although there
was a slight tendency for people to attribute greater similarity to Partner 2 (M = 13.98, SD = 3.61)
than to Partner 1 (M = 12.42, SD = 4.80), F(1,56) = 3.52, p < .07,
η
2
= .06, no interaction
involving this within-subject factor was significant, all Fs < .05.
Three hypotheses were proposed with respect to conformity to group norms. H3 and H4
predicted a main effect for deindividuation (favoring the same-character condition) and group
membership (favoring the same-university condition), respectively; H5 predicted an interaction
between the two factors such that deindividuation effect would take different forms, either
enhancing conformity (inter-group condition) or fostering social differentiation (interpersonal
condition). The main effect for deindividuation was not statistically significant; nor was the effect
for group membership, both Fs < 1. Thus, H 3 and H4 were not supported.
Consistent with H5, however, the interaction was statistically significant, F(1,56) = 5.45,
p < .05,
η
2
= .09 (see Figure 2). Furthermore, when the interaction was decomposed (Winer,
1971), the pattern comported well with our predictions. More specifically, those in the inter-group
condition displayed greater conformity to the same-charactered partners (M = -.44, SD = 1.56)
than to the different-charactered counterparts (M = -1.53, SD = 1.56), t(56) = 2.58, p < .02. On
the other hand, when they interacted with the same-university students, they exhibited less
conformity to the same-charactered partners (M = -1.78, SD = 1.30) than to different-charactered
counterparts (M = -.91, SD = 2.00), t(56) = 2.00, p = .05.
INSERT FIGURE 2 ABOUT HERE


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