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Lurkers and Posters on Collegiate Sports Message Boards: a Uses and Gratifications Study

Epperley, Bradley Scott
This study used Clavio's (2009) Collegiate Sports Message Board (CSMB) scale to measure attitudes about the popular social media Websites among a sample of collegiate sports message board users. A factor analysis revealed five underlying factors that make up attitudes toward CSMBs - Interactivity, Diversion, Information Gathering, Argumentation, and Pass Time. The first four factors confirmed the results from Clavio (2009). Users of CSMBs overwhelmingly preferred them over other media formats for information about their favorite team. When respondents were divided into groups as lurkers - those who visit the Website but don't contribute content - and participating members, significant differences were seen in four of the five factors. In addition, lurkers and posters showed significant differences in their media usage patterns including Internet, CSMBs, sports magazines, and national sports television networks. Age and sex also indicated differences between the two groups.