Motives for Creating a Private Website and Personality of Personal Homepage Owners in Terms of Extraversion and Heuristic Orientation

Vol.4,No.1(2010)

Abstract
The purpose of this study was to investigate personal characteristics of homepage owners as well as motives for creating an own homepage. Questionnaires were obtained from 102 personal website owners. Our results show that personal homepage owners are more extraverted compared to the general population. Furthermore, the personality of personal homepage owners differ from the general population since their cognitive style is more heuristic. However, within our sample bloggers did not differ from non-bloggers. The analyses concerning the motives showed that the main reasons for the participants to create and maintain an own homepage are enjoyment, exercise in terms of web design, and self-portrayal. Thereby, extraversion scores are highest for individuals who own a homepage with the objective to portray themselves. In contrast, the motive “exercise” refers to higher scores in terms of heuristic orientation. Since we assessed an Internet survey, self-selection biases may limitate our results.

Keywords:
personal homepages, personality, extraversion, cognitive style, heuristics, algorithms
Author biographies

David Weibel

Author photoDavid Weibel (Ph.D.) is a research associate in the Department of Psychology at University of Bern, Switzerland. He holds a scholarship from the Hans-Sigrist Foundation. His research interests concern human experiences and behavior in mediated environments and include (tele)presence, flow experiences, embodiment and identification with avatars.

Bartholomäus Wissmath

Author photoBartholomäus Wissmath (Ph.D.) is a Hans-Sigrist research fellow in the Department of Psychology, University of Bern, Switzerland. His research interests focus on (tele-)presence, avatars, identity, and embodiment. Besides, he is interested in research methods and traumatic stress.

Rudolf Groner

Author photoRudolf Groner (Ph.D.) is Professor Eremitus in the Department of Psychology at University of Bern and head of the e-learning research division in the department of psychology at the Swiss University of Distance Education. His research interests include media studies, eye movement research, and heuristics.
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