Investigating the Behavior of Sharing Information of Students in the Virtual Social Networks: Instagram, Telegram and WhatsApp

Document Type : Original Article


1 Ph.D. in Information and Knowledge Sciences; South Khorasan Public libraries Foundation, South Khorasan, Iran

2 Professor, Information and Knowledge Sciences Department, Ferdowsi University, Mashhad, Iran

3 Professor, Information and Knowledge Sciences Department, Kharazmi University, Tehran, Iran

4 Assistant Professor, Information and Knowledge Sciences Department, Kharazmi University, Tehran, Iran


Aim: The main purpose of the present study was to investigate the students’ information sharing behavior in the universities of South Khorasan Province in the social network sites of Instagram, Telegram, and WhatsApp.
Methodology: This research was of an applied type and was conducted through a survey method. The study population consisted of all the students of universities affiliated to the Ministry of Science, Research and Technology in South Khorasan Province in Iran who were studying in the academic year of 2018-2019 with a minimum experience of six months in using one of the social network sites of Telegram, Instagram or WhatsApp.
Findings: Only about 33% of the respondents have used social network sites for less than an hour during 24h. The rate of use has been more than three hours in 24h for about 24.5% of the respondents. Nearly 50 percent of respondents have used social network sites for more than three years, and only about 13 percent have experienced using these networks between six months to a year. Among the social network sites surveyed, respondents mostly used Telegram to share information. The results showed that students shared information on social network sites more than average. In choosing a social network, there was no significant difference between the information sharing behavior of male and female students and students of different fields of study, but there was a significant difference between the information sharing behavior of students of different educational levels. In addition, the results showed that there was a significant difference between sharing economic, personal, and family, art, and sports information by male and female respondents. There was also a significant difference between economic, cultural- social, and religious information shared by students in different fields of study on social network sites. There was a significant difference between respondents of different educational levels regarding economic, entertaining, occupational-professional, cultural-social, religious, artistic, and sports information shared in social network sites
Conclusion: Students spend a lot of time sharing information on social network sites.


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