The show must go on: The presentation of self during interpersonal conflict on facebook

Jinyoung Kim, June Ahn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examines the presentation of self on Facebook by looking at user perceptions and behavior in times of conflict. Through semi-structured interviews with Facebook users, we examined users' perceptions of Facebook as a front stage for social performance as well as the context of conflicts that they experience on Facebook. The findings show that interviewees experience conflicts when they encounter unexpected behaviors from peers that disturb their "performances" on Facebook. Violated norms activate different coping mechanisms, and interviewees often considered the goal of self-presentation when adopting coping mechanisms during online conflicts. We also found that transitions in life situations were related to the heightened concerns of self-presentation. Our study sheds light on the nature of conflicts occurring on Facebook and contributes to our understanding of a user's decisionmaking process in pursuing the dual goals of impression management and interpersonal relationship maintenance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalProceedings of the ASIST Annual Meeting
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2013


  • Facebook
  • Impression management
  • Interpersonal conflict
  • Social Networking Sites

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Library and Information Sciences


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