This study was carried out to examine the attitude of tertiary students in Abia state towards Instagram selfies using Abia State University Uturu as a case study. To achieve this, the significant research objectives were formulated. The survey design was adopted and the simple random sampling techniques were employed in this study. The population size comprises of students of Abia State University Uturu. In determining the sample size, the researcher conveniently selected 229 respondents while 215 were received and 210 were validated. Self-constructed and validated questionnaire was used for data collection. The collected and validated questionnaires were analyzed using frequency tables and mean scores. The result of the findings reveals that the prevalence of Instagram selfie usage among students in Abia State is high. The findings also revealed that the motives behind students’ use of Instagram selfies encompasses self- expression, gain recognition, gain likes, gain comments, and gain acceptance. In regard to the findings, the study recommends that students should be taught on the dangers and cons of selfie snapping on Instagram, pointing out that it consumes time, raises the risk of addiction and can adversely affect their academic performance. Also, students should be sensitized on the possibilities of impersonation by unknown individuals for criminal intentions. The occurrence of this act is highly attributable to constant sharing of pictures on Instagram.
Keywords: Social media, Social networking, Instagram, Selfie.
Background Of The Study
Social media currently seem to take the centre stage in the field of information and communication technology(Nche, 2012). It has become an integral part of modern society. Consequently, social networking websites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have created new ways to socialize and interact. Users of these sites are able to add a wide variety of information to pages, to pursue common interests and to connect with others (Idrus & Hitam, 2014). The interactions in social medias are most of issues of entertainment, education, society activities, environment and of personal interest. The curiosity that exist among the youth in this advent of social media technologies such like the “Instagram”, can be attributed to the globalization of the society.
Instagram is a social media platform by which communication is shared among friends in order to keep close relationship beyond inter-face with each other. Kaplan (2010) defined Instagram as a social media, which serves as platform for sharing social interest, and build on the ideological and technological foundations of web which allow the creation and exchange of user generated content. Verster (2010) observed that Instagram is fast becoming the default internet mode of interaction, communication and collaboration”. In Nigeria, for instance, social media sites especially Instagram, have apparently become common, especially among the students due to the daily use of the Selfie features of the application.
A new genre of self- expression “Selfies” – amateur self-photographs, often shared with others through Instagram likewise other social networking sites (Weiser, 2018) has now become a common and popular gateways to online world, especially in the area of self-disclosure. Studies have shown the students to be more active in selfie disclosures(Dhir, Torsheim, Pallesen & Andreassen, 2016; Baiocco, Bianchi, Chirumbolo, Morelli, Ioverno & Nappa 2016) cited in Weiser, 2018; and in the use of Instagram network profile picture construction. Literature also suggests that these students are also more likely than Adults to engage in a “selfie policy” that emphasizes the selection of ideal photos (Senft & Baym, 2015) and engage more in own selfie disclosures than any other type of selfies, such as group selfies and selfies with a partner. This study is therefore focused on ascertaining attitude of tertiary students towards Instagram selfies.
Statement Of The Problem
Instagram has gain ground in the social media world as becoming a photo and video display advertisement for persons. It is one of the social media platform that is highly appreciated by users especially the students of tertiary education. The photo-sharing network has evolved into a photo, video-, and GIF- sharing network. It’s even become a competitor with Snapchat for live video with its introduction of Instagram Stories and Instagram Live, and a competitor with Pinterest with its recently released “Save” feature(Kaplan 2010). Many students have different purposes of creating Instagram account and these are for social posting of pictures, videos and hashtag. Instagram users generate leads that will make them have more followers. These are done for entertainment objectives but many people have beginning to make use of the Instagram for many other things. Specifically, majority of Nigerian youths uses Instagram for self- expression “Selfies” – amateur self-photographs. This have been found dominant among undergraduate students in Nigeria. It has also been established that social media users construct and present their “preferred” identities online through selfies, to gain recognition, likes, comments, acceptance etc (Bareket-Bojmel, Moran, & Shahar, 2016). However, scholars have recognized selfie as a prominent social media activity among users, especially from developed climes, calling up the need to determine how Youths in developing countries engage in such a behaviour.
Objective Of The Study
Generally, this study aims at examining the attitude of tertiary students in Abia state towards Instagram selfies. Specifically, the study will;
- Determine prevalence of Instagram selfies usage among students in Abia State.
- Ascertain students motives behind the use of Instagram selfies.
- Determine whether Instagram selfies influences the social lifestyle of Instagram selfies.
The study will be guided by the following questions;
- What is the prevalence of Instagram selfie usage among students in Abia State?
- What is the motives behind students’ use of Instagram selfies?
- Does Instagram selfies influence social lifestyle of students?
Significance of the Study
This study will help to unveiled the pattern and motive behind the constant use of the Instagram selfies among undergraduates in Nigerian universities. The study will therefore be of great relevance to both students, and key stakeholders in Nigerian Universities. Most important;y the result of this study will be useful to counselors in the schools, as it will give them guide on how to reprimand students on the implications for regular use of instagram selfies.
Additionally, subsequent researchers will use it as literature review. This means that, other students who may decide to conduct studies in this area will have the opportunity to use this study as available literature that can be subjected to critical review. Invariably, the result of the study contributes immensely to the body of academic knowledge with regards to the attitude of tertiary students in Abia state towards Instagram selfies.
Scope Of The Study
The study focuses on the examination of the attitude of tertiary students in Abia state towards Instagram selfies. The study will further narrow to the prevalence of Instagram selfies usage among students in Abia State, students motives behind the use of Instagram selfies, and determining whether Instagram selfies influences the social lifestyle of Instagram selfies. The study will be carried out in Abia State University Uturu.
Limitation Of The Study
Like in every human endeavour, the researcher encountered slight constraints while carrying out the study. Insufficient funds tend to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature, or information and in the process of data collection, which is why the researcher resorted to a limited choice of sample size. More so, the researcher simultaneously engaged in this study with other academic work. As a result, the amount of time spent on research will be reduced.
Operational Definition of Terms
Influence: This is the art at which a variable affect another variable in cause a change of outcome.
Social Media: This means social networking site design to create flow of information among users in their social quest. These include but not limited to facebook, whatsapp, Instagram, twitter e.t.c.
Instagram: This is a social media platform where users post videos and pictures for social activities so that their followers will see and make comments or share.
Perception: This is the feelings and attitude of people towards a particular thing or person or concept.