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Titel / Title Cyber social interactions: Information behavior in between social and parasocial interactions.
Author / Autor Stock, W. G., Scheibe, K., Fietkiewicz, K. J., & Zimmer, F.
Source / Quelle

Journal of Information Science Theory and Practice, 2022, 10(3), 15-23.

Language / Sprache English/Englisch


Participants in real-time online sessions, be it (business) meetings, virtual school lessons, or social live streams, all engage in cyber social interactions. Unlike parasocial interactions, cyber social interactions are characterized by reciprocity and temporal proximity. In contrast to social interactions, they lack spatial proximity and bodily contact. This is a fairly new concept in information science that rose from the technological advances and unprecedented circumstances (e.g., rise of digital economy and knowledge workers being able to work remotely or, more recently, global lockdowns and contact restrictions). As a result, the past ways of working and socializing were transformed by making them, in some cases predominantly, virtual. On the example of social live streaming we exhibit the importance of cyber social interactions for information behavior research. This conceptual article is a plea for information science to engage more in human-human online relations and interactions.

Keywords: Information behavior, social live streaming, cyber social interaction, cyber social relation, social interaction, parasocial interaction

DOI: 10.1633/JISTAP.2022.10.3.2