Self-Presentation of Personality During Online Profile Creation

Scott Counts, Kristin Stecher

Conference: Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Weblogs and Social Media, ICWSM 2009 |

When users present themselves in a social networking community, they are called on to create profiles that are representative and portray a desired image. In this paper, we examine the profile creation process. We explore what selfpresentations are desired and how these presentations are created by having people rate their profile along personality dimensions after completing each attribute field in a mock social network-like profile. Findings indicate that people hope to convey personality traits through their online profiles and that they are able to create profiles they feel match their desired self-presentation. Free-form profile attributes best enable desired self presentations of traits, and only a few of these attributes are needed for sufficient self presentation online.