Social Aversion and Online Aggression

Speaker 2023

Online aggression is a form of antisocial online behavior that has been widely studied among adolescents, but adults of all ages are involved as well. During this presentation, potential risk factors of online aggression perpetration among adults will be discussed. More precisely, this presentation will focus on (potential) associations between socially aversive personality traits and online aggression perpetration. In order to explain these associations, I will look at (aggressive/immoral) cognitions. In contrast to previous research and to account for ICT affordances, I will argue for an adapted conceptualization and operationalization of moral disengagement. Furthermore, I will show the results of a study in which the mediating role of online moral disengagement in the relationships between traits and perpetration was tested among adults aged 19-79. A path model revealed indirect associations for two traits, psychopathy and sadism, with online aggression perpetration via online moral disengagement, while controlling for online aggression victimization. Theoretical and practical implications will be discussed.


Sara Pabian

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Digital Humanities Tilburg