The Self on Instagram: A Study on How People With Different Hair Colors Use Instagram for Online Self-presentation


This study explores how women with different hair colors use Instagram for online self-presentation, considering how hair has been historically significant to identify a person’s status. Goffman’s framework of self-presentation was used in this study. Furthermore, he explains self-presentation through the concept of theater, in which a person performs different roles in front of an audience to influence their impressions. When Goffman conceptualized self-presentation, digital technology was unavailable. This study looks at how self-presentation is enabled by digital technology. In order to explore self-presentation in the context of digital technology, the researcher considered Instagram as the online self-presentation platform for this study. Made as a photo-sharing mobile application, the study looked at the top 10 most liked photos of the participants on their Instagram accounts. A mixture of qualitative and quantitative methods was used. The researcher used quantitative method to know the themes visible on the participants’ Instagram accounts; visual content analysis was used to examine and analyze the content of the participants’ photos along with in-depth interviews to learn about their online self-presentation. The results showed that the participants perform offline and online strategies, curating one’s self for their online self-presentation. Strategic online self-presentation paved the way for online self-branding where the participants get value from different companies and brands.

Author Information
Donnalyn De Chavez, De La Salle University, Philippines

Paper Information
Conference: MediAsia2019
Stream: Social Media & Communication Technology

This paper is part of the MediAsia2019 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon