Ana’s PhD Defense

The first PhD defense within ReDefTie is already a fact! On July 27, Ana defended her dissertation “Spontaneous Inferences and their Implications for Ambient Awareness”, which was part of the Informational Benefits subproject, with a summa cum laude.


Ana has handed in her PhD thesis and our paper on the effects of SNS use on online social support, stress and life satisfaction has been accepted for the special issue of JMP on media use and well-being!

Method specialist wanted! – for position or as collaborators

Are you interested in the long-term effects of social media use? Then join our team!

Johannes is leaving our team by April 1st, so we are looking for another method specialist with experience in analyzing complex longitudinal data-sets.

As the project ends in December 2017, the position is temporary.

The collection of the 8th and last wave of the longitudinal study will start soon, and we will share the dataset afterwards. We have detailed information on Facebook use, LinkedIn use and Twitter use from a representative sample of Dutch online users and a bunch of social capital indicators (e.g., stress, social support, civic engagement, informational benefits). If you are interested in working with us, just contact me at

Have no fear, your smartphone is here – Nomophobia among internet users

The use of smartphones has become ubiquitous for large parts of the population in Europe. As smartphones are also commonly used to access social network sites, we decided to take a look at the use of smartphones in the latest waves of our longitudinal study. We first asked our respondents whether they own a smartphone. Out of the 1330 person who participated in the 6th wave of our survey, 72.8% reported that they currently own a smartphone. The share of smartphone owners slightly increased in wave 7 with 76.5% of the sample reporting ownership. Continue reading

Longitudinal study: Fotosharing sites become more popular; only small changes in the overall use of social networking sites

As the data from the 5th wave of our longitudinal study are in, we decided that it’s time to look at the development of social media use over time. Similar to what we saw in the data from the first two waves (see previous post), the overall patterns of social media use remain quite stable. Around 71% of the respondents use social networking sites (SNS) for private purposes, while the share of people who use SNS for professional purposes is approximately 24%. Continue reading

International Summer School “Living with Media”

Ana and Ruoyun attended the International Summer School “Living With Media” taking place in Cologne between July 19th and 24th, and presented their work in the interactive poster session. Ana’s poster won the best poster award. The posters are available here on our blog.

The summer school, hosted by the University of Cologne, is the first in a series of summer schools organized in collaboration with Michigan State University. The summer schools aims to provide students advanced training and foster the development of sustainable international and interdisciplinary networks. Four general topics were covered this year: 1) media, development, education and learning; 2) online communication and social media; 3) media, morality, and social norms; and 4) media, well-being, and self-regulation.

The days consisted of a morning lecture by senior faculty and responses given by junior scholars. The attendees could choose to participate in one of the workshops guided by junior scholars. The workshops consisted of working in small groups and presenting the groupwork in a plenary session for feedback and discussion. Each day ended with an interactive poster session, in which participants first presented their work for 5 minutes.

The organizers did a great job ensuring excellent work environment and friendly, collaborative atmosphere. The discussion were lively and informative, often carrying on much after the official hours of the school had ended. The social events, some of which were organized and some happened spontaneously, were fun and enjoyable.

We would like to thank the organizers, the lecturers, and other participants for the great time and opportunity to discuss our work and the works of others in such an excellent yet relaxed environment. We learned plenty of valuable research knowledge, heard about excellent research, met amazing people, and came back inspired and full of enthusiasm.

And here comes the great news – the summer school will have a next chapter! If you or your grad students are interested in taking part, we recommend it wholeheartedly. We’ll make sure to share upcoming info here and on our Twitter account @ReDefTie.

ICA 2015

All three papers we submitted from ReDefTie got accepted to the 65th Annual ICA Conference. The trip to San Juan was a great experience for our team and we really enjoyed the conference.

Ana and Ruoyun were accepted to the doctoral consortium of the Communication and Technology Division. At the CAT doctoral consortium, we (Ana and Ruoyun) spent a day discussing our and other PhD projects with a handful of excellent students and faculty.

Our papers will be available for download at the conference website for another couple of weeks and you can find the presentation slides here on the blog.

First journal paper published!

We are happy to announce that our first project paper, titled as “Emotional Responses of Browsing Facebook: Happiness, Envy, and Tie Strength), is now published in Computers and Human Behavior (download here)!

The paper examines the emotional responses (both positive and negative) of browsing Facebook, and how these are influenced by tie strength (relationship closeness between the reader and poster).

Continue reading

Method specialist wanted!

We are looking for a committed
Researcher, main area: methods (part-time)
in the ERC/Social Media lab, starting to work at KMRC on April 1, 2015 or later. Our lab investigates the emotional and informational benefits of social media use as well as strategic communication via social media in the interpersonal and organizational domain. These topics are studied from a social psychological, media psychological and communication science perspective.
The successful applicant will work within the ERC project ReDefTie / Redefining tie strength – How social media (can) help us to get non-redundant useful information and emotional support” (ERC Starting Grant). The mains tasks will be method consulting and help with the analysis of complex datasets (including longitudinal data).

Click here for the (German) job ad:

Also available: post-doc position in the social media group, starting in August 2015