||Founded in 2006, Facebook is one of the most popular social network sites around the world, and it also has the highest penetration in Taiwan. Related researches have proved that Facebook is an online stage for self-presentation, and is proved to help online political participation. However, related works have taken self-presentation and online political participation as a cultural universal phenomenon, and discussions through cultural perspective are insufficient. |
This research studied Facebook self-presentation and online political participation through a Taiwanese cultural perspective. Cultural factors such as harmony, face, and guan-xi was discussed in the current research. 14 in-depth interviews were conducted with 14 Taiwanese Facebook users in this research to understand how Taiwanese culture affects Facebook users’ self-presentation and political participation behavior.
The research data indicates: 1. Users have gone through political socialization in different contexts. 2. Three different “roles” in political self-presentation are found including “lurkers”, “experts” and “idealists”. How culture influence these characters are discussed. 3. Under the “perfect performance” playbook, when Facebook users are engaging political discussions, they always try to save face (mianzi) for others. Also, they take a moderate (Zhongyong) way in political participations. 4. Facebook as a political participation space, being “rational” is one of the most important interaction premise. And users like to interact with other users who they think is worth talking to. Additionally, users tend to discuss political issues in private messenger implies that politics is stigmatized in Taiwanese social context.
Limitations and suggestions for future research are also discussed.