Why Men who post a lot on social media are considered less masculine? For better or worse, much of life is categorized by gender: Clothing stores have sections for men and women. Also, certain foods are perceived as more masculine or feminine, and even drinks can give off a sense of gender (“mimosa,” who knows. Are not?).
Our recently published research shows that even social media is a canvas for rigid gender stereotypes.
Specifically, we show that men who frequently post on social media are perceived as feminine. A phenomenon we call the “poster femininity stereotype”. We observed this trend in four experiments with more than 1,300 respondents from the United States and the United Kingdom.
To publish is considered unmanly
As consumer behavior researchers, we have long been interested in the contradictions, peculiarities, and limitations associated with masculinity.
These dynamics have profound implications in the world of marketing. For example, it is well known that Coke Zero was created as an alternative to Diet Coke. Also, a product that men famously shunned because of its association with women wanting to lose weight. People even tend to think that sleeping more is not masculine, since the need for rest is linked to weakness and vulnerability.
We thought about how some of these concepts might work on social media. Survey data shows that men and women use social media platforms in very different ways. For example, in general, men tend to use fewer platforms and don’t post as often as women on apps like Instagram.
We wondered if gender bias had anything to do with why. Are men judged harshly when they share on social media? To test this question, we conducted a series of experiments in which respondents were asked to rate a “normal, average, normal” man who frequently or rarely posts online. society. To give a more concrete picture, we have described this man as someone who posts online for fun and has a moderate following.
Respondents consistently rated this man as more feminine when described as a frequent poster on social media. This holds true regardless of assumptions made about the man’s age, education, wealth, and favorite social media background. We also controlled for the gender, age, political beliefs, and social media use of the study participants. Notably, we used an identical scenario to describe a woman’s posting behavior. Also the frequency of posting had no effect on how feminine people thought she was.
Aversion to appearing needy
What then explains this somewhat unusual effect?
We’ve found that anyone who posts regularly, regardless of gender, is considered an attention-seeking and authentic person. But this sense of expected need only translates into perceived femininity in men.
That is logic. After all, research has shown that rejecting femininity is important for conventional notions of masculinity. Also while avoiding masculinity is not necessarily important for conventional femininity. Indeed, advertising, TV shows, movies, and music continue to reinforce the idea that men are staunchly stoic and self-sufficient. Our results indicate that by frequently posting online, men present themselves as the opposite.
Not only that but the effect of “the stereotype of femininity that often posts” turned out to be stronger than expected.
Two of our experiments tried but ultimately failed, to reduce this bias.
First, we tested whether men were perceived differently when they shared content about others than content about themselves – the idea being that posting this behavior would be considered to consider, not to seek the truth. Second, we looked at whether male influencers – who mostly post for professional reasons – faced the same stereotype.
In both cases – and to our surprise – the frequent posts led participants to view these social network users as more feminine.
Expanding the definition of masculinity
There’s a lot we don’t know about this unique bias.
For example, it’s unclear to what extent the stereotypes that frequently post about femininity affect how men are judged in different cultures. While men around the world are often perceived as less masculine when they appear needy, our study only included participants from the UK and the US.
How do you completely break the link between regular posting and femininity? Our study shows that this association is long-lasting and reflects persistent gender dynamics.
However, it is worth exploring how platforms can reduce this bias through their design. For example, BeReal is an app that prompts users to quickly share an unedited snapshot of what they’re doing at a random time of day. Functions like these seem to emphasize authenticity, routine, and community. Is this a recipe for altering the association between published and validated research?
Men, in particular, are experiencing historic rates of social isolation and facing serious mental health consequences. This health crisis may be exacerbated by widespread biases that make men feel they can’t talk about their problems or ask for help. The stereotype that frequently posts about femininity shows another case in which men were judged for trying to express themselves and form social relationships.
As New York Times reporter Claire Cain Miller wrote in 2018, there are “many ways to be a girl but one way to be a boy,” both in Western cultures and around the world. What would it take to expand this rigid definition of masculinity 카지노사이트?