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Published on November 26, 2007

Author: Laurence

Source: authorstream.com

How Turkey Interacts Online: A Study of Users of a Confessional Website and its Cultural Contexts :  How Turkey Interacts Online: A Study of Users of a Confessional Website and its Cultural Contexts Christine Ogan School of Informatics and School of Journalism Indiana University Bloomington, IN Kürşat Cağiltay Dept. of Computer Education and Instructional Technology Middle East Technical University Ankara, Turkey With Lots of help from Muzaffer Özakça, School of Informatics Itiraf.com (confession.com):  Itiraf.com (confession.com) sesimiduyanyokmu; Gender: Female; Age: 46: Province: Ankara My father was an alcoholic. No treatment stopped him. One night, when he was drunk, he raped me. I have been through psychological treatment, but I still remember it like yesterday. Now, I have a daughter who is the same age I was when I was raped. She is growing up to be a beautiful girl. I trust my husband. However, I still live with the fear that the same thing may happen to her. My father passed away about seven years ago. I wanted to cry when he died, but I couldn’t do it. I hate him. Please do not use alcohol like my father. I do not know how many people there are out there like me. I hope that such a terrible thing never happens to anybody. Psychologically I am crushed itiraf:  itiraf sazandoktor; Gender: Male; Age:35; Province:  Istanbul I am a doctor in one of the major private hospitals. I am writing this with shame. In order to increase the birth rate percentage in the In Vitro fertilization clinic, instead of using the fathers’ problematic sperm, they are using the sperm of health care personnel, or that of the people whom they find in exchange for money, an amount around 100 million TL. This is why most of the In Vitro fertilization babies look like the health care workers. itiraf:  itiraf wemding; Gender: male; Age: 28; Province: Istanbul I played a guitar for 6 years in middle and High School. Because of this my right hand nails were always long. I would use my elder sisters toothbrush to clean them. She never knew it of course. (Still doesn’t know). She thinks she got away with the things she did to me but she is mistaken big time. itiraf:  itiraf Spy_young; gender, male; age, 24; Province, Istanbul When I was just starting to get used to the Internet, because of my "comprehensive" knowledge of English I thought Hotmail (since it includes 'hot') meant a postal service that sends pornographic photos to my email. I even wrote down my home address in the Sign-In box. OK. OK. I heard, Magma is the second room on the right.. What people do on itiraf.com:  What people do on itiraf.com Read confessions of others Submit confessions of their own Write comments about others’ confessions Find a love interest Meet off line Information about the Site:  Information about the Site Operating since 1999 64,000 or more unique visits a day Ersan Ozer, founder, calls it “the school of life.” Spawned similar sites online and print and broadcast attempts to duplicate Two digests of confessions published in book form. Internet Use in Turkey--6/04:  Internet Use in Turkey--6/04 5.86% of Turkish homes have Internet connection. 6.2 million users out of a population of about 70 million. 3.88% of women and 9.38% of men have used the Internet in the last 3 months Access: 41% from workplace; 42% from Internet cafes; 32% from home (multiple locations allowed) 11,269 registered internet cafes in Turkey (as of June, 2004). Other Confessional Sites:  Other Confessional Sites Group Hug http://grouphug.us Daily Confession http://dailyconfession.com Erotik itiraf http://www.erotik-itiraf.com ItirafX http://www.itirafx.com How to Understand the Popularity of a Confession Site in Turkey:  How to Understand the Popularity of a Confession Site in Turkey Storytelling integral part of Turkish culture The Confession magazine in U.S. and Fotoroman in Turkey Ann Landers vs. Güzin abla http://sevgiliguzinabla.com/guzin/site/basinda.htm Jerry Springer vs. Televole TRT and the exclusion of ordinary people Religion and Confession:  Religion and Confession In Christianity confession is both public and private Role of online confessional http://www.theconfessor.org Vatican banned online confession in 2001 But others continue: http://www.notproud.com Islam and Confession:  Islam and Confession Sunni Islam has no tradition of confession and absolution (most Turks are Sunnis). No belief in original sin Alevis do have confession in worship at the meeting houses (10-12 million Turks) Only after confession in Cem Evi can you participate in the service Foucault believed that “Arabo-Moslem” societies had no need to develop tradition of confession to deal with sexual acts. Uses and Gratifications--the Theoretical Frame:  Uses and Gratifications--the Theoretical Frame Designed for mass media use/contrast to “effects” studies. Often used in Internet audience studies as it assumes active audience. Usually applied to the whole Internet, not specific sites. We replicated questions from some other studies to make comparisons Uses and Grats Theory Derivations:  Uses and Grats Theory Derivations Social and psychological origins Of needs, which generate Expectations of The mass media and other sources, which lead to Differential patterns of exposure or engagement in other activities Resulting in other consequences, perhaps mostly unintended. (Blumler +Katz, 1974) What Scholars Have Said :  What Scholars Have Said Most Internet studies focused on communication atheoretical (Kim and Weaver, 2002). Studies focused on entire Internet or on genre or type of interest. Difficult to compare findings of U+G Internet studies (diff. ?s, measures, and based only on U.S.-based surveys). Methodology:  Methodology Online survey linked to itiraf.com web site in July 2003. 3,958 responses from within Turkey; 505 from other countries; 68 did not list a location 783 agreed to participate in follow-up Significance of the high response levels itiraf.com Users:  itiraf.com Users Based on web survey responses of 4,531 individuals in July 2003. AGE--54% between 22 and 30; 28% between 18 and 21. Much like national profile. EDUCATION--79.1% are in university or have completed degrees; 20.9% had high school or less education. Unlike national distribution. GENDER--52% women and 48% men (56-44 on itiraf site survey). Unlike national profile. WHY? PLACE OF ACCESS--42.8% access Internet from home (measure of affluence) Itiraf.com Use:  Itiraf.com Use Faithful readers of confessions on the site (51.1% read daily and 27.1 read nearly every day. Heavy Internet users--more than 2 hrs/day for personal reasons for 43.9% About 25% spend 45 min-1 hour Less than 1/3 of users are readers only--meaning that at least 3,000 have submitted at least one confession. Age of Users 46.2% are 16-24* 28.1% are aged 18-21:  Age of Users 46.2% are 16-24* 28.1% are aged 18-21 32.0% are 35-44 54.0% are aged 22-30 6.2% are 45-54 15.2% are aged 31-40 1.1% are 55-64 2.7% are 41 and over .2% are 56-74 User Activity:  User Activity More than 80% never met anyone f2f from the site More than 1/3 have submitted more than 3 confessions but about 2/3 of submitters have never been published More than 60% have commented on others’ confessions Itiraf.com users vs. U.S. users:  Itiraf.com users vs. U.S. users Compared with Pew studies, priorities are similar--e-mail, news, web surfing and finding information Turkish users do more messaging and less shopping. Use web more for educational purposes Similar in viewing porn and building web sites Factor Analysis of Responses to Gratification Questions:  Factor Analysis of Responses to Gratification Questions 4-factor solution Feelings (.78 alpha) Diversion/entertainment (.72 alpha) Social Interaction (.78 alpha) Pressure Relief (.81 alpha) Factors Influencing Frequency of itiraf.com Use Multiple regression :  Factors Influencing Frequency of itiraf.com Use Multiple regression Block 1 Block 2 Age -.03 -.02 Gender .10** .06** Educational Level -.16** -.09** Social Interaction .14** Feelings .07** Diversion 25** Pressure Relief -.02 Adj. R2=.17 **p<.01 Factors Influencing Number of Confessions Submitted to itiraf.com Multiple Regression:  Factors Influencing Number of Confessions Submitted to itiraf.com Multiple Regression Block 1 Block 2 Age -.10** -.07** Gender -.05 .01 Educational Level -.02** .03 Social Interaction .58** Feelings -.04 Diversion .05* Pressure relief -.14** Adj. R2=.28 *p<.05 **p<.01 How to Understand Results:  How to Understand Results Simply, compared to U.S. users who seek interaction with others As an extension of Turkish celebrity television shows where stories are told/corresponds to interest in excitement and entertainment of web site As a substitute for family in a changing society As a substitute for religious confession or psychological counseling

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