Drawing on social identity theory (SIT), the current research explored the psychosocial impacts of digital gaming, through two studies. In Study 1, Football Manager players (N= 349) completed an online questionnaire measuring their social identity, quality of friendships, self-esteem, and psychological well-being. Study 2 utilised the equivalent methodology but in relation to FIFA players (N = 95), in which social identity was framed by their affiliation as online versus offline players. Study 1 found that social identity was positively related to well-being. Study 2 found differential effects of social identity as a result of the context of play. Specifically, positive associations were found for players who played in offline contexts in respect of support and depth of relationships. Overall, positive associations were found between social identity and self-esteem. This research highlights the application of SIT through a more nuanced contextual lens, to more fully understand its psychosocial impacts.
- Social identity
- digital gaming