Larose, Lai, Lange, Love and Wu (2005)
|Larose, Lai, Lange, Love and Wu (2005)|
|Title:||Sharing or piracy? An exploration of downloading behavior|
|Author(s):||Larose, R., Lai, Y. J., Lange, R., Love, B., Wu, Y.|
|Citation:||LaRose, R., Lai, Y. J., Lange, R., Love, B., & Wu, Y. (2005). Sharing or piracy? An exploration of downloading behavior. Journal of Computer‐Mediated Communication, 11(1), 1-21.|
|Key Related Studies:|
|Linked by:||Sheehan, Tsao and Yang (2010)|
|About the Data|
|Data Description:||Dataset consists of 265 questionaires, answered by undergraduate students of a large mid-western university (USA). Participants completed online surveys from their own personal computers in the last week of November and the first week of December of 2003.|
|Data Type:||Primary data|
|Secondary Data Sources:|
|Data Collection Methods:|
|Data Analysis Methods:|
|Cross Country Study?:||No|
|Government or policy study?:||No|
|Time Period(s) of Collection:||
This exploratory study applies and extends a new model of media attendance to examine factors that determine current levels of sharing files through peer-to-peer networks among college students, and to predict downloaders' intentions to discontinue the behavior in the future. In a multiple regression analysis, downloading activity was found to be positively related to deficient self-regulation and the expected social outcomes of downloading behavior. Downloading activity was lessened by dissatisfaction with poor quality downloads. Those who are willing to discontinue downloading are motivated by fear of punishment, but skilled and habitual downloaders were unlikely to discontinue. Normative beliefs also affected downloading. The perception that downloading was morally unacceptable was positively related to intentions to discontinue downloading, while beliefs that the behavior was morally acceptable were positively related to current downloading activity.
Main Results of the Study
This article intends to explore the motivations of illegal downloading while using its result to inform policy. More specifically, this article shows that:
- The hypothesized model of downloading activity derived from Social Cognitive Theory was supported by data analysis.
- The socio-cognitive model can predict specific types of Internet usage as well as the overall amount of attendance to the medium.
- Self-efficacy in using file sharing software and the perceived ability to avoid punishment for doing so were also related to the amount of downloading individuals engaged in.
- The most important predictor of downloading was deficient selfregulation—the perception that one's file sharing was out of control.
- File sharing becomes a habit rather than a purposive behavior, with files accumulating on college students' computers that they may never even open or listen to.
- The expectation of deriving social benefits from downloading moderates the effect of deficient self-regulation on intentions to discontinue file sharing.
- The fear of industry lawsuits, however, may not be the most effective scare tactic. Rather, the present results suggested that fear of sanctions from one's university may be more effective.
Policy Implications as Stated By Author
- Enlisting universities to do the "dirty work" of tracking down and intimidating file sharers would appear to be more effective than filing lawsuits against isolated users, in that expectations of university reprisals were more strongly related to intentions to discontinue than expectations of law suits.
- Another approach might be to make legal pay music services more attractive to downloaders, specifically by highlighting the social aspects of downloading.
- Following the logic of social cognitive theory, the more that the targets of the lawsuits resemble the downloaders themselves and the more certain downloaders are of being punished, the greater the impact of the scare tactics should be.
Coverage of Study
|Level of aggregation:||University students|
|Period of material under study:||2003|