The value(s) of social media rituals: a cross-cultural analysis of New Year’s resolutions
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractNew Year’s resolutions are acts of valuation where people express ideas about what is important and worthwhile in life. Although resolutions have a long history, the twenty-first century has transformed the practice into a social media ritual with greater visibility, interactivity, and reach. Using this unique event to explore the globalization of values, we analyze tweets about New Year’s resolutions in English, German, Italian, Japanese, and Korean. Combining network analysis (n = 160,592) and content analysis (n = 2000), we compare discursive topics, modes of ritual participation, and the values expressed in resolutions. Our findings indicate both that the ritual crosses cultures and that there are language-specific dynamics that do not map neatly onto established divisions between ‘Eastern’ and ‘Western’ value orientations. Instead, we identify three underlying tensions organizing the articulation of values: self-acceptance vs. self-improvement, public vs. private, and conformity vs. oppositionality. We discuss these in relation to an overarching tension between local contexts and global platform cultures. Finally, we explore the study’s broader implications for understanding the interaction between values, norms, and global communicative practices.
CitationHallinan, B., Kim, B., Scharlach, R. et al. (2021) The value(s) of social media rituals: a cross-cultural analysis of New Year’s resolutions. Information, Communication & Society. https://doi.org/10.1080/1369118X.2021.1983003
JournalInformation, Communication & Society
Description© 2021 The Authors. Published by Routledge. This is an open access article available under a Creative Commons licence. The published version can be accessed at the following link on the publisher’s website: https://doi.org/10.1080/1369118X.2021.1983003
SponsorsThis project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme [grant agreement No 819004].
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/