Introduction In existing literature, researchers have primarily focused on the understanding of social behaviour through the analysis of environmental influences, such as attachment styles [1], and their interaction with genetic factors [2] like the serotonin-transporter gene [3]. Although we have gathered a broad knowledge of in-person interactions, little is known about online social behaviour [4]. To explore online sociability, this research examines how serotonin-transporter gene and adult attachment with a romantic partner interact in moderating Instagram users' behaviour. Methods The Experience in Close Relationships-Revised [5] questionnaire was adopted to collect participants' (N = 57; 41 females) adult attachment with their partner in terms of avoidance and anxiety, and the genetic factors within the region rs25531 of the serotonin-transporter gene (T/T, T/C) were assessed [4]. Users’ number of posts, number of followed users (followings) and number of followers on Instagram were obtained by using an ad-hoc Python script [6]. Results We hypothesized an interaction effect between genetic groups and ECR-R scores on the number of posts and followings. Although we did not detect specific gene-environment interactions, we identified an avoidance effect on Instagram followings’ number. Specifically, independently of their genetic signature, participants with high avoidance towards their partner showed a lower number of followings, as compared to those who reported low scores in avoidance. Conclusion As reported for in-person social behaviours [7], the tendency to refrain from intimacy with one’s partner could result in an extended avoidant behaviour in online social interactions, and also in social networks like Instagram.

The effect of avoidant attachment with the partner on the number of followed users on Instagram: a GxE study.

Bonassi, A.;Cataldo, I.;Lepri, B.;
2021

Abstract

Introduction In existing literature, researchers have primarily focused on the understanding of social behaviour through the analysis of environmental influences, such as attachment styles [1], and their interaction with genetic factors [2] like the serotonin-transporter gene [3]. Although we have gathered a broad knowledge of in-person interactions, little is known about online social behaviour [4]. To explore online sociability, this research examines how serotonin-transporter gene and adult attachment with a romantic partner interact in moderating Instagram users' behaviour. Methods The Experience in Close Relationships-Revised [5] questionnaire was adopted to collect participants' (N = 57; 41 females) adult attachment with their partner in terms of avoidance and anxiety, and the genetic factors within the region rs25531 of the serotonin-transporter gene (T/T, T/C) were assessed [4]. Users’ number of posts, number of followed users (followings) and number of followers on Instagram were obtained by using an ad-hoc Python script [6]. Results We hypothesized an interaction effect between genetic groups and ECR-R scores on the number of posts and followings. Although we did not detect specific gene-environment interactions, we identified an avoidance effect on Instagram followings’ number. Specifically, independently of their genetic signature, participants with high avoidance towards their partner showed a lower number of followings, as compared to those who reported low scores in avoidance. Conclusion As reported for in-person social behaviours [7], the tendency to refrain from intimacy with one’s partner could result in an extended avoidant behaviour in online social interactions, and also in social networks like Instagram.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11582/325131
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