Psychosocial outcomes associated with engagement with online chat systems

LINDA KAYE, Sally Quinn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (journal)peer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)
37 Downloads (Pure)


The psychosocial outcomes associated with online communication is hotly debated. We explored how WhatsApp engagement related to a number of psychosocial outcomes, and how key social factors were relevant here. WhatsApp users (N = 200) completed an online questionnaire measuring WhatsApp use and motivations, online bonding, quality of relationships, group identity, and psychosocial outcomes. Findings showed that including mediator variables of online bonding, group identity and quality of relationships was important for understanding the relationship between WhatsApp use and well-being. Specifically, online bonding mediated the relationship between WhatsApp use and social competence, and self-esteem. Group identity had an effect on all outcomes except psychological well-being. Conversely, although minutes per day using WhatsApp was positively related to quality of relationships, this in turn, was not significantly related to any of the outcome variables. This highlights the pertinence of accounting for key mediators underpinning the link between technology use and well-being.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)190-198
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Human-Computer Interaction
Issue number2
Early online date31 May 2019
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 31 May 2019


  • Psychosocial


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