Online Shaming in the Asian Context : Community Empowerment or Civic Vigilantism?

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

19 Scopus Citations
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Author(s)

  • Marko M. Skoric
  • Keng Hui Wong
  • Jia Ping Esther Chua
  • Pei Jue Yeo
  • Meiyan Angeline Liew

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-199
Journal / PublicationSurveillance & Society
Volume8
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010
Externally publishedYes

Abstract

Online shaming is a phenomenon where citizens engage in social policing by shaming transgressions via the Internet. It has been argued that the proliferation of new communication networks and digital recording devices have the potential to bring about a new paradigm for ensuring conformity to social norms through the self-regulation of society. Incorporating literature from criminology, law, psychology, sociology, and surveillance studies, this two-part exploratory empirical study conducted in Singapore aims to give an account of why people engage in online shaming (Study 1), and attempts to assess how the authorities view this emerging socio-technological phenomenon. We also examine who is likely to be deterred and who is likely to contribute content to online shaming websites in relation to personality traits, adherence to Asian values and social responsibility (Study 2). The in-depth interviews reveal that people engage in online shaming mainly to raise awareness about the lack of civic-mindedness in society. They also show that the authorities remain optimistic but cautious about the use peer-surveillance to ensure conformity to norms and laws. A survey of 321 Singaporeans suggest that people who are more likely to be deterred by the threat of online shaming are those who are more socially responsible, more agreeable, more neurotic and adhere more strongly to Asian values. Furthermore, our findings suggest that individuals who are more likely to contribute to online shaming websites tend to be more socially responsible and open to new experiences. The theoretical, technological and policy implications of the findings are discussed. © The authors, 2010.

Research Area(s)

  • online shaming, Singapore, peer surveillance

Citation Format(s)

Online Shaming in the Asian Context : Community Empowerment or Civic Vigilantism? / Skoric, Marko M.; Wong, Keng Hui; Chua, Jia Ping Esther; Yeo, Pei Jue; Liew, Meiyan Angeline.

In: Surveillance & Society, Vol. 8, No. 2, 12.2010, p. 181-199.

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review