Mobile Phones in Social Settings How and What Mobile Phones are Used for during Face-to-Face Conversations

Detta är en Kandidat-uppsats från Malmö högskola/Kultur och samhälle

Sammanfattning: Mobile phone use while in the presence of physical conversational partners is a reality in modern day life. Many researchers have investigated how different subgroups use mobile phones and the consequences of such use. The goal of this research was to determine how mobile phones are used in social settings when face-to-face conversations are taking place. The main questions that the research attempted to solve were: (1) If the phone use was related to the conversation at hand, (2) if the intensity of phone use was correlated to how the phone was used, (3) and if phones are used during conversations in different ways depending on the relationships and demographics of the conversational partners. The research was conducted in Malmö, Sweden at bars and cafes´ by administering a semi structured verbal interview on people seen using their cell phones while in face-to-face conversations. Relevant demographic information was recorded as well as five open ended questions. The questions were aimed at understanding how the phone was used, and the phones use in relation to the physical conversation. The research was conducted using the research paradigm of Positivism and the data was analyzed using an Inductive research strategy. Uses and Gratifications theory was the main theory that this research was viewed through. In addition, relevant information was drawn from various psychological theories as well as problematic mobile phone research. The findings show that the majority of phone use is unrelated to the conversations at hand. But often this phone use is re-integrated into the conversation at a later time. It was also found that phone use related to information retrieval was most likely to be related to the face-to-face conversation. Additionally, the data showed that conversational partners that use the phone a lot are highly unlikely to be using the phone in relation to the conversation. The data showed that friends are most likely to not use the phone in relation to the conversation.

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