|Title:||Deindividuation and internet software piracy|
|Citation:||Hinduja, S. (2008). Deindividuation and internet software piracy. CyberPsychology & Behavior, 11(4), 391-398.|
|Key Related Studies:|
|Linked by:||Hinduja and Ingram (2009)|
|About the Data|
|Data Description:||A data set consisting of 30 classes from varying disciplines with a total of 507 respondents. Following deletion of cases with missing values, the final sample size totaled 433 (85.4% of the original).The data were collected at a large Midwestern university during the summer of 2000.|
|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:||
Computer crime has increased exponentially in recent years as hardware, software, and network resources become more affordable and available to individuals from all walks of life. Software piracy is one prevalent type of cybercrime and has detrimentally affected the economic health of the software industry. Moreover, piracy arguably represents a rend in the moral fabric associated with the respect of intellectual property and reduces the financial incentive of product creation and innovation. Deindividuation theory, originating from the field of social psychology, argues that individuals are extricated from responsibility for their actions simply because they no longer have an acute awareness of the identity of self and of others. That is, external and internal constraints that would typically regulate questionable behavior are rendered less effective via certain anonymizing and disinhibiting conditions of the social and environmental context. This exploratory piece seeks to establish the role of deindividuation in liberating individuals to commit software piracy by testing the hypothesis that persons who prefer the anonymity and pseudonymity associated with interaction on the Internet are more likely to pirate software. Through this research, it is hoped that the empirical identification of such a social psychological determinant will help further illuminate the phenomenon.
Main Results of the Study
This article intends to obtain a greater understanding of the factors that influence the commission of software piracy. It attempts to obtain empirical verification of the assumption that valuing anonymous communication capabilities and favoring the use of various online identities is positively related to participation in software piracy. More specifically, this article shows that:
- Males were more likely to be immersed in piracy than females, as were those who did not appreciate anonymous communications—a finding contrary to theoretical expectations.
- The relevance of race and pseudonymity were not influential in differentiating pirates from nonpirates in the population.
Policy Implications as Stated By Author
Coverage of Study
|Level of aggregation:||University students|
|Period of material under study:||2000|