Why cyberbullies choose cyberspace: From the perspective of uses and gratifications
This study employs uses and gratifications (U&G) theory to examine the motives and face-to-face bullying experiences of cyberbullies and how those motives and experiences influence their Internet bullying. An online survey and multiple regressions were employed to test the hypotheses. The results revealed that a cyberbully with more victim experience in face-to-face bullying will be more likely to have reactive than instrumental aggression motives to conduct cyberbullying behavior; while a cyberbully with more bully experience in face-to-face bullying will be more inclined to instrumental than reactive aggression motives. Further, a cyberbully with either reactive motives or instrumental motives relies on both the anonymity and wider audience available on the Internet. The results contribute to U&G theory with problem behavior research, and some practical applications of anti-cyberbullying campaigns are discussed.