The Diffusion of Social Media Adoption in Everyday Academic Information Seeking

By Qiong Xu.

Published by The Technology Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: January 8, 2014 $US5.00

This study examines the diffusion of social media adoption in everyday academic information seeking from the perspective of communication, and further explores the implication of this diffusion for information services in academic libraries. Using the framework of social cognitive theory of mass communication, a survey was conducted to examine the relationship between structural context and adoptive behavior. Non-adoptive behavior is also examined to identify the factors obstructing the diffusion of library social media usage. The structural context consists of demographics, experience in information seeking, dependence on information sources, and psychological factors. Statistical analyses indicate significant relationships between structural context and adoptive and non-adoptive behavior. The low coverage of library social media and inactive diffusion via social networks are identified as the main barriers to obstruct the diffusion of library social media usage in an academic community. The findings suggest that more user-centric content should be generated on library social media to meet users’ information needs. The findings also suggest that a content analysis should be conducted to further explore the relationship between the characteristics of information content and the diffusion of library social media adoption.

Keywords: Diffusion, Innovative Behavior, Social Media, Information Seeking, Adoptive Behavior

International Journal of Technology, Knowledge and Society, Volume 9, Issue 4, pp.41-60. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: January 8, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 764.934KB)).

Qiong Xu

Research Assistant, The College of Communication and Information Sciences, The School of Library and Information Studies, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL, USA

Ph.D. student and Research Assistant of communication and information sciences at the University of Alabama. Her research interests include new media, interactive information seeking and retrieval, digital library, information technology and literacy, and cross-cultural research. She ever presented her research papers at 2013 the 9th International Conference on Technology, Knowledge, and Society; AEJMC 2012 Midwinter Conference; and ACA 2012 Conference. The paper “A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Domestic and International Students’ Social Media Usage”, on which she is the primary author, was presented by her co-author, Mr. Richard Mocarski, at the 63rd International Communication Association Conference at London, UK in June, 2013. This manuscript is based on the paper presented at the 9th International Conference on Technology, Knowledge, and Society. A following study based on the results of this study is ongoing.


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